Following their route to Radio, the story from 2 of our 2012 graduates.
Learning Waves Skillnet, as part of its JSSP programme in 2012, developed 2 specific radio courses with IT Tralee and IT Carlow. The programmes were designed to give participants the knowledge and practical skills to put them in a position where they could potentially gain employment in the radio sector. Two years on, Learning Waves Skillnet has tracked the progress of two students who took part in the 2012 courses.
John Verling closed his Vodafone business in September 2012 due to a continuous downturn in business. He then found himself wondering what he would do. Through Facebook, John became aware of the course on offer from Learning Waves Skillnet through IT Tralee. He interviewed for the course and by the end of September 2012 he was a student of IT Tralee funded by Learning Waves Skillnet. The work experience element of the course was particularly attractive to John. During the course, John made four short feature programmes that were broadcast on ‘Kerry Today’ on Radio Kerry. He then found himself, through the work placement, producing radio and making documentaries and short features. John had found a new future for himself. According to John, ‘he learnt a lot in a very short space of time’ and acknowledges that he ‘still has a lot to learn’. John is now developing documentaries and hoping to source funding through the BAI Sound and Vision grant scheme. He attributes the ‘solid foundation’ given to him during the course as the success to his recent successful pitch of a documentary idea to Newstalk 106-108FM. His radio career has now started to come together. John is hoping to develop a series of documentaries for Newstalk, RTE and other stations and he concluded that ‘ mentioning the Learning Waves Skillnet course makes all the difference when talking to producers or pitching ideas to stations’. His final conclusion was ‘thankfully I was browsing Facebook on that Sunday afternoon…’.
Claire Collins was working in Radio Kerry on work experience with no training in radio at all in September 2012. . It was recommended to her too look at participating in the Learning Waves Skillnet course with IT Tralee.
According to Claire, ‘the course was very beneficial’. It helped her with script writing and improved her research skills and interview skills. She also got to learn more about the studio and how it operated and her on air presence was fine tuned with the one to one voice training element of the course.
The course really helped build her confidence and as a result she did more reports and interviews for the morning talk show. Claire ended up being nominated for the 2013 PPI Newcomer to Broadcasting Award she summed this as, ‘a definite highlight for me’.
Claire is currently working in Newstalk where she has the opportunity to research and produce. She went to Newstalk on the work experience module as part of the course. She was recently made permanent as a researcher on the Sean Moncrief Show in Newstalk says that, ‘now I have my dream job and I couldn't be happier’.
According to Claire, ‘there is a lot of hard work and grueling hours at times, but the rewards in this industry are ten fold. I've had amazing opportunities so far and travelled with various shows, meeting incredible and interesting people’.
Claire believes that she is much better prepared due to the course, the feedback she received from it and the chance to spend time developing her skills was essential. She got to meet people who actually work in the industry and they shared experiences, advice and gave a realistic steer as to what's expected of you. She concludes by saying that, it's an exciting industry and doing the course certainly helped me to get where I am now’.