We all have existential crises at some point in our lives. Sometimes we even have multiple. These crises come when we feel as though we do not know the next step in our lives or where we are headed in the future. We are constantly trying to figure out, and as Drake would put it, “God’s Plan” for us on this earth and find our purpose.
I had a small existential crisis over Thanksgiving break – it wasn’t something traumatic, but it was definitely something worth noting.
I was awake in bed one night thinking about a lot of things, but one topic seemed to rise above the rest: what the heck I am doing with my life? Better than that: what the heck am I going to do after I graduate. I have been doing pretty well in my classes, at my jobs, with the newspaper and recently got an internship, but something was missing. I felt as though I had lost my desire to pursue the career path I truly want to go down: journalism.
I laid in bed thinking about how much I want to be a music journalist and have the opportunity to be at the forefront of the musical events in the entertainment world. I just did not know if I was taking the right precautions for obtaining this goal. That is when I figured that I must apply myself more towards this goal the closer I get to graduation.
On Tuesday November 27th, I had the opportunity to sit down with Assumption graduate Mike Uva. Uva is currently a television sports anchor at WACH in Colombia, South Carolina and recently was awarded Sportscaster of the Year in 2017. I talked about a number of topics with Mike from what he did as an undergraduate at Assumption to platform his current career to his favorite place to go out in Worcester.
My talk with Mike helped me reignite that passion for journalism I had rediscovered not even a week prior. He passed down a significant amount of advice for a young, budding journalist that I think all should be aware of. So if you are having the same mini crisis as I am, you might want to keep reading.
The biggest takeaway I got from Mike was to be dynamic. What did he mean by this? In my Social Media Journalism class I took last semester, I was informed at just how much is expected today of journalists and reporters. We must find our own stories, interview sources, reach out to sources, conduct live streams, broadcast news, run our own social media and much more. Being a journalist is basically the same definition as being dynamic: you must be able to do almost anything to get the job done.
Mike said that being dynamic and creative were the two best traits any journalist can have for excelling in the field. I asked him how he did this and continued to show me a creative broadcast on Thanksgiving of him portraying rival sports fans at the dinner table. He also informed me about the sports talk show that he and his classmates put together during their time at Assumption. That is when Mike first learned about the aspect of networking.
One of his friend’s dads was an investigative reporter for The Boston Globe and they used his power to help get their talk show off the ground. From there, Mike met multiple people within the industry that also helped him network and find employment. He also mentioned that, even today, if anything were to happen to his position in South Carolina, Mike could come back to Boston. Mike also said to not be afraid to try new things and fail. His comparison to applying to broadcast stations was that to the NFL. There are 32 teams in the NFL, but you only need one to give you a shot to play at the professional level.
Of course not all of us are going to be professional athletes but the idea remains the same. Keep applying yourself to as many areas of your interest as possible and something will open up or come your way. You just have to be persistent.
So I guess I really took a number of things from Mike’s chat. The first is to be dynamic. Being able to do a little bit of everything allows employers to see your hard work and keep you on board. The second is to be creative. Try new things and stand out in field where everyone is essentially doing the same work as you. The third is to be innovative. Make sure you come up with initiatives that will hone your creativity even more and establish a good reputation for your work. Lastly, be persistent. It may take a thousand “no’s” before you get that one “yes.” It may be hard hearing all that negativity for so long, but think of how great that “yes” will feel once you hear it.
And my advice to you at that point would be to hold on to that opportunity nice and tight. You were chosen for a reason, so make it count.
David Cifarelli, a senior, studies English and Italian. He is the Editor-In-Chief of Le Provocateur.