So many students nowadays settle for average, they take the easy way out, and they only seem to do what is required of them. They assume that if they go to college, that fact alone will set them up perfectly and they will be able to find a job and live happily ever after. That just isn’t the case, or at least it isn’t anymore.
Students should start taking an active role in their career path the day that they walk on campus. There are so many opportunities, and there are so many people that are willing to help you. I always heard this, but it wasn’t until I arrived at Bowling Green, that I really began to believe it.
I want to have a job in sports, so I will give you my example and tell you what I am doing, and then you can apply it to whatever you are doing. This isn’t going to be a guide or set of steps that you should follow. It will simply be my course of action, and you can take it for what its worth.
On my first full day here at BGSU, I had a meeting with faculty of my major (Sport Management). I wrote down the organizations that they presented in this meeting that seemed interesting to me, and that presented opportunities for me to get more experience in my field of interest. I then stayed after the meeting and talked with the head of the department for about a half hour. I introduced myself, made connections with him, and asked what I should do to start volunteering. He directed me to two of the Assistant Athletic Directors. I emailed them both the second I got back to my dorm. And no more than a few hours later, I had an offer to be a volunteer and an offer to attend a meeting with the entire Athletic Staff. I attending that meeting today at the football stadium (My favorite place on campus).
They told us that we could volunteer and get press passes to any sporting event on campus. We could write recap stories for the athletic website, construct player bios, take stats, and everything in between. We also could sign up for office hours. We then got a tour of the football locker room and stadium, which I thought was the coolest thing in the world. During the tour, we found out that we get to watch every football game from inside the press box, and we get access to the locker rooms and press conferences after the game.
In other words, I will be in heaven for the next 9 months. THIS is exactly what I want my job to be. This is what I want to do for the rest of my life. As he was explaining what we would have the opportunity to do, I literally could not stop myself from thinking how amazing this is going to be. I was sitting in the chair, filled with pure excitement.
I then saw the assigned office hours sheet, each other student is set to be in the office for 1.5 hours for one day out of the week. I was told to email one of the guys there to tell them when I could work. But before I left, I talked a little BG Football and I was told that I knew more about the team than they did, which was awesome to hear.
I then went back to the library to email one of the staff members. Once I get there, I contemplated on how long I should volunteer for office hours. I wanted to volunteer more than just once a week and more than just 1.5 hours. I felt like this would separate me even more. Then again, I knew that doing this may cause more stress with my academics. But in the end, I realized that I was just going to do it. This experience is priceless and I want to do this when I get a little bit older, so all the extra work is going to pay off. And it will be great for the guys in the position that I want to be in, to think highly of myself.
In life during this day of age, you NEED to make contacts. Its starting to become more about who you know, rather than what you know. So make contacts with people that are ultimately going to think of you as someone who is hard working, and someone who can help you with a job down the road.
I got this amazing position because I went out and looked for it and obtained it. I got my internship this summer because I went out on my own and emailed over 50 executives of baseball organizations. I did this at a time where they were not even looking for interns for the current year, let alone the following year.
Also, don’t get caught up in the big named organizations. Working with a smaller named brand is just as important, especially if you are doing work that you want to do in the future.
Four years from now, I will have had my own blog for over 5 years, I will have worked hundreds of events at the collegiate level, put in hundreds of hours at the office in the field of my interest, gained priceless experience for that field of interest, learned ON the job from experts in that field, completed several internships that are specifically tailored to my career path, and obtained numerous contacts from people in the highest possible positions in the field of study that I want to pursue.
I did all of this because I went out and took it. And anyone can do the same. Figure out what you want to do, and start looking on ways to achieve that goal NOW.
Four years from now, I will be so far ahead of so many students. And when they are fresh off of graduation and looking for a job for the first time, I will already be hired and will be set to enjoy my dream job for the rest of my life.
“Forward Falcons, Forward Falcons
Make the contest keen
Hold up the fame of our mighty name
And win for Bowling Green.”