Every student has to work hard in the various competitive fields of mass media, but for 2008 graduate Travis Holmes, it has been extremely hard. This is because Travis has always dreamt about working in the one of the most competitive fields in the industry, sports.
Throughout his time in E-Media, it was always all about sports. After a job search that included a short internship with the Florence Freedom, a minor league baseball team, Holmes has finally found a home at Cleveland State University (CSU) as their Sports Information Specialist and New Media person.
This new position has Travis shoot and edit footage of CSU’s Division I sports teams, broadcast play by play for select sports on the Horizon League Network, and to provide content for CSUVikings.com. He uses skills with Final Cut Pro, the Adobe Creative Suite and with various audio editors; all of which were things he learned in E-Media.
Travis was the Sports Director at Bearcast Radio and also co-hosted a sports talk show called “The Red Zone”. He interned with ClearChannel (1530 Homer) and with GoBearcats.com. It was there that he worked on his craft and made valuable connections with Cincinnati sports talk radio personality Mo Egger, and with UC’s Director of New Media and Broadcasting, Tommy Gelehrter (Tommy G).
Both Tommy G and Egger called on behalf of Travis on every single interview Travis had, which really meant a lot to him. Holmes’s now boss, just so happened to be the Sports Information Director here at UC from 1995-2003, and when he needed to find someone to handle new media tasks, he emailed Tommy G.
“Tommy G forwarded me [the job information] and then I applied,” says Travis. “[UC Football broadcaster] Dan Hoard, Tommy G, and Mo Egger all know my boss and all made calls on my behalf. Within a few weeks, I was hired.”
Travis went on to say that without the help from every last one of his connections, especially Tommy G, he might still be looking for a job in the cutthroat sports industry.
“I owe everything I have done so far in my career to Tommy G,” says Travis, “He’s gone to bat for me every single time and given me so many opportunities to better myself; and he was just as excited as I was when I found out I got the job. Knowing that somebody wants you to succeed as much as you want it for yourself keeps you going when times get tough. When the people closest to you get pumped up and are proud of you, that’s just the best feeling in the world.”
It took Travis two long years to find his first job in the sports industry, but it was well worth it. He was the first intern hired by Tommy G in his first year at UC, so it was no wonder that he was thrilled to hear the news.
“He was always willing to lend a hand, learn a new skill and most importantly, be a part of our team,” says Tommy G. “I can honestly say that my operation would not be nearly as successful if it wasn’t for Travis’ help over the past four years. I was lucky to have him on-board as long as I did and I am very excited about his new opportunity at Cleveland State.”
Travis than offered this advice for students in Electronic Media, and especially for students interested in careers in sports:
· Networking is the single most important thing in your career. Hands down. I don’t care what you learned in a classroom or how much experience you have, you better get to know people or you won’t even get your foot in the door.
· Get involved in extra curricular activities. Give it maximum devotion and effort. It will teach you basic occupational skills moving forward into your career.
· Make sure the person doing the hiring hears your voice. Send a tape, call them, email them, but don’t annoy them.
· Never under any circumstances give up or allow yourself to get discouraged.
Written by Brandon Kisker, October 2010