I keep forgetting that I’m receiving class credit for my work with BSU at the Games. In the spring, the other students and I spent our class time preparing for London and building content. But since the start of summer, this experience has felt more like a dream job than a class.
In May, two professors, four other students and I traveled to Dallas for the 2012 Team USA Media Summit. Media professionals from all over the country gathered at the Hilton Anatole downtown to interview Olympic hopefuls. Not only was I able to interview dozens of athletes, but I also had the opportunity to network with professionals from The New York Times, Twitter, WTHR-TV (Indianapolis) and more. And that’s not to mention the fact that I attended press conferences for Michelle Obama and Michael Phelps.
When we first arrived, I’ll admit that I wasn’t sure how I was going to pull this off. Working next to media professionals who have “been in the biz” for years is incredibly intimidating. But I caught on quickly, and I was able to pull from my knowledge and practice from these last three years at Ball State. My time in Dallas felt like an entire internship’s worth of experience crammed into three days. And I loved every second of it.
I also learned quite a bit about myself at the Media Summit. Generally speaking, I work well under pressure. (I guess procrastination isn’t always a bad thing.) It turns out that I’m also very capable of stepping outside of my comfort zone, which proved to be essential in such a competitive environment.
Finally, my experience in Dallas reinforced my dreams and ambitions. As a soon-to-be graduate, it’s hard not to get bogged down by all the negative realities of the job market. But this trip was a reminder that I’m doing what I love and that it’s worth all the blood, sweat and tears. I can only imagine what my adventures in London will bring.