Mark Maben, CBI Development Director
In his blog post of January 6th of this year, author, entrepreneur, and brilliant marketer Seth Godin touched on the importance of being involved in activities like student electronic media. He wrote about how college seniors across the country are kicking their post-college job searches into high gear right now, and his post validates how giving 100% to something you are passionate about while in school pays real dividends when it comes time to land a job or pursue your dreams after graduation.
You can read Seth’s full entire entry here. This is the part of post that reminded me of why college radio, TV, and other electronic media are such vital experiences for students:
The thing is, whether you’re a newly graduating senior (in hundreds of thousands of dollars of debt) or a middle-aged, experienced knowledge worker looking for a new job, what the best gigs want to know is:
- Can you show me a history of generous, talented, extraordinary side projects?
- Have you ever been so passionate about your work that you’ve gone in through the side door?
- Are you an expert at something that actually generates value?
- Have you connected with leaders in the field in moments when you weren’t actually looking for a job?
- Does your reputation speak for itself?
- Where online can I see the trail of magic you regularly create?
None of these things are particularly difficult to learn, if you are willing to be not very good at them before you’re good at them.
Student electronic media offers the opportunity for a student to be not very good at something until s/he becomes good at it. At my campus radio station, student staff members are held to professional standards, but they are also given the room to make mistakes, fail, try again, improve, and through this they usually get really good. This is true at campus media outlets nationwide. Those of us who advise, mentor, and/or teach regularly see students who “go in through the side door,” and network even when not looking for a job because they simply wish to learn, create, and master something they love to do.
CBI member media outlets are truly special places. We encourage learning by doing and experimentation. We build confidence and reputations in young adults. We allow students to learn from mistakes. We create spaces in which magic can be created and shared. It is very different than what is traditionally taught in a classroom, but it is precisely the kind of learning so many students need for 21st century careers. And I am deeply grateful that CBI is there to support all of us, students and advisers alike.