Matthew Dixon doesn’t worry too much.
“If you start stressing too much then you won’t produce your best work,” says Matt in regards to journalism.
“The University of Missouri is the oldest journalism school in the world and boasts the best undergraduate program in the US,” says Matt.
The Columbia Missourian is a daily newspaper, which covers stories from the city itself (around 100,000 people) and the surrounding areas.
On his first day at the Columbia Missourian, Matt says he felt lost and fumbled around. He ended up producing a story about the record amount of enrolments at the local school. His story ended up on the front page of the newspaper the next day.
While he was at the Columbia Missourian, Matt was expected to write three to four news stories a week for production for the daily paper.
Matt was also required to work one general assignment shift per week. The 12-hour shift meant Matt had to cover anything that would be newsworthy for that day.
Matt says his experience working for the Columbia Missourian was intense.
“The Missourian is just like any other news room and at times it can be a pressure filled place with everyone stressing about what is going in the paper the next day.”
“At the start of my time there is no doubt I was kind of in awe of the whole process and a little out of my depth but that is what makes experience so great. Now I know what to expect when I find myself in the same atmosphere which is a big plus.”
However Matt wouldn’t have gained the hands on experience he has today, if he hadn’t gone on exchange.
During his time there he was lucky enough to cover some major stories such as a local murder in the town.
“During a general assignment shift a ‘shots fired’ came over the police scanner in the newsroom so a photographer, one other reporter and I headed out to what was a murder scene. I won’t lie it was a pretty stressful experience. An experience like that is hard to get anywhere else.”
While at upstart Matt is required to publish one article per week and edit the work of other contributors.
From his experience with the Columbia Missourian, Matt feels he is well rounded enough to have start his career in journalism.
Matt also has his own blog, The Grumpy Mustache.
“My blog is essentially me being an arrogant arsehole analyzing the world,” says Matt.
Twitter is a useful tool for Matt when connecting with his audience from his blog. He also sees it as something every media student should have.
“Twitter is something that is extremely important to anyone wanting to work in the media. If you don’t know how to use it, it’s a big disadvantage for you when you go for a job” says Matt.
Matt is a country boy at heart who is passionate about politics, footy, and spends his free time travelling highways as he commutes from his hometown Colac to Bundoora every day.
His dream job is to be a freelance journalist travelling the world, something which he thinks might not be entirely realistic.
Matt’s experiences with the Columbia Missourian, upstart and his overall portfolio of work has made him stand out to prospective employers.
Matt was invited to apply for a journalist position at the Kalgoorlie Miner, which he has accepted and will start immediately.
My Interning Life wishes Matt all the best.
You can follow Matt on Twitter and read his blog The Grumpy Mustache. You can also read all of Matt’s articles published on upstart and in the Columbia Missourian.
“The majority of employers won’t even consider your application if you haven’t done at least some work experience. Sometimes being paid isn’t the most important aspect, it is the things you learn along the way and the only way you will learn is if you get out there and give it a go”, says Matt.
“Only so much can be learnt in a class room. Not to say that class based theory is not important but there are aspects of any profession which can only be learnt by actually doing the job itself.”
Giulio Di Giorgio is a budding broadcast journalist with aspirations of working in radio and television. Since May this year, Giulio has been interning with Melbourne sports radio station 1116 SEN.
Giulio has also recently completed a work experience placement with Melbourne radio station 3AW. His experience with 3AW was so successful that Giulio has been invited back to do some producing work with the highly rated station.
Giulio says he tries to undertake as much work experience as possible to further complement his studies. Through his own initiative, he has also completed work experience with Network Ten, Radio Sport National and SYN FM.
“I have a passion for the media industry and I’m highly motivated, and hopefully my persistence will pay off,” Giulio explains.
Upstart is an online publication for emerging journalists that was started at La Trobe, however aspiring journalists are encouraged to contribute. While being part of the upstart editorial team, Giulio sub-edits, writes news and feature articles and produces audio and video content for the site.
Giulio says his internship at SEN is invaluable and gives him an insight into the radio broadcasting industry. On a weekly basis, Giulio assists the senior producer with pre-show preparation, including sourcing and contacting interview talent, researching talent, editing audio, publishing podcasts online, answering listeners’ calls and post-program administration.
Giulio’s various work experience placements and his current internship with SEN has helped him gain many skills which have contributed to his personal development.
“I really want a gig within the media industry, so [I’ve] just got to make a few sacrifices and hopefully the fruits of my hard work will pay off in the future,” he says.
He also agrees with the common saying, ‘it’s not what you know, it’s who you know’, and Giulio has been successful in developing contacts within the media industry from his hard work and persistence.
Networking is imperative for Giulio and his internship with SEN has given him an understanding into the behind the scenes of a radio station. However, Giulio would love to be on the other side of the microphone in the future as a successful broadcast journalist.
In such a competitive industry, Giulio’s various work experience placements and internships will no doubt make him stand out to prospective employers.
Perhaps it’s this piece of advice that drives Giulio: “Someone who works in the media industry once said to me; Say ‘yes’ to every opportunity and worry about the consequences later.”
You can follow Giulio on twitter and read his articles published on upstart If you are an aspiring journalist, take a look at upstart’s notes for contributors and submit your articles and ideas to the editorial team by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
“Undertake as much practical experience as you can – even in a voluntary capacity. You’ll be surprised with how much you learn and how many people you meet, including prospective employers,” says Giulio.
“Most importantly, don’t ever give up. Keep the faith, keep persisting, keep knocking on that door, and you’ll succeed.”