As a student journalist, I have had the opportunity to go to a few press boxes for different sports. Despite these only being over the past year, I already have learned so much from these experiences. With this in mind, here are a few things I wish I knew when going to my first press box.
Don’t be scared of going
Going into a press box with professionals can be daunting at first, but it is a real opportunity to see what makes sports journalists tick, and remember you’re one of them now you are a professional too.
It also gives a sense of what jobs are actually available. I had no idea that Birmingham City FC had more than one person dedicated to creating Twitter posts during the game, for example.
By going to the press box, you also have a great opportunity to connect with professionals in the industry. I will talk more on this topic in the next section, but being surrounded by people working in the field gives crucial experience before entering the workplace.
Talk to others in the press box
Just going into the press box can be scary, let alone talking to anyone there, but with more experience going to these kinds of areas you do feel more able to talk to people. This allows for you to gain information on their roles, as well as possibly get a social media connection that could benefit you later on down the road.
Getting to know how other people have managed to make it into the press box, and make a living out of it, is incredibly valuable and getting to know someone adds to the number of contacts you have entering the job market.
The fact that you enjoy watching sports is the reason that you are in the press box in the first place. Why would you then stop enjoying it now? Being surrounded by people who have mountains of knowledge about the events in front of you can add an extra dimension to watching sport in general.
Debating the importance of 8-1 fields in cricket at the Lord’s media centre is not something I would have pictured myself having the chance to do, but nevertheless it is a memory that will stick with me.
The best match reports or live updates also come from when you are engaged in the sport. By enjoying your time in the press box, you can make friends and create better content – a double whammy for future success.