A Can’t-Miss Opportunity for Women Who Want to Work in Sports Broadcasting

sports reporter jobs laura okmin

Women interested in sports broadcasting careers can learn from award winning journalist Laura Okmin at the upcoming Sports Broadcasting Bootcamp

Women who aspire to greatness in sports broadcasting start out with a negative before they have a chance to show their positives.

There are 30 frames per second on television and in just 1 frame – 1/30th of a second – many feel they are able to summarize an entire persons worth:

“She got that job because of how she looks”

“I bet she doesn’t know a thing about sports”

“I guarantee she’s dating one of the players and that’s how she got this job

Someone’s entire existence summed up by preconceived notions and centuries old gender issues.  It’s a sad fact.

Sports employers haven’t exactly done women any favors, often forcibly hurling the audience into their jump to conclusions by hiring women who are not ready, but are pretty, to represent them on air.

A stumble here and a mistake there and the predictable chorus of “see, I told you so” resonates in living rooms everywhere.

There are few chances for women in sports broadcasting to carve out their niche, find willing mentors and learn from others who have been where they want to go. The upcoming Sports Broadcasting Bootcamp, hosted by award-winning journalist and NFL on Fox sideline reporter Laura Okmin and Vice-President of Events and Field Production for Fox Sports, Celeste Gehring,  is exactly the type of experience women have been waiting for.

As these two bright and talented women explain, this Bootcamp is For Women. By Women. The weekend event takes place April 18-19th in Los Angeles and spots are limited because sessions are intended to remain intimate. For more information you can contact Laura and Celeste by emailing them at womeninsportsbroadcasting@gmail.com

This seminar gave me new found confidence to conquer the unknown: Click To Tweet

I spoke with Laura earlier this week and she provided me more details on what you can expect from the Sports Broadcasting Bootcamp:

Why is teaching and mentoring young women so important to you?

Okmin: My first two jobs I had in TV broadcasting, I was the first and only woman to be in sports in both cities. I had no other women to reach out to for guidance or advice.  I would’ve absolutely loved to have had another woman to talk to who was going through what I was going through.

I now hope to be that voice for young women who are on the same ride.

sports reporter jobs okmin with kobe bryant

As Laura Okmin’s career grew, so did the opportunities to cover larger events like Olympic Basketball, but starting in a small market was an important part of her process

My first act was all about me and my journey, and I’ve loved my journey, but I want my second act to be about helping others with theirs. I’ve absolutely loved mentoring some pretty outstanding young women.

What can a young woman expect to get out of this weekend?

Okmin: My partner, Celeste Gehring, and I will tell you it’s an outstanding weekend, and it is, for the young women and for us, but I’d rather share with you what two of our young women told us about their experience at a previous Bootcamp:

Samantha S: I thought it was amazing. I cannot stress enough how “badly I needed this.”  

The best thing is that I am pretty sure the other girls feel the same way. It was a relief, this entire time I have felt like I have taken the road less traveled, and not necessarily by choice but just because I felt like there were times where I was convinced that everyone else had their lives together and I was the one playing with smoke and mirrors.  

I felt like even with this I was going in kind of blindly and honestly, it was an ah-ha moment to look around and see uncut raw honesty in every single one of the girls. I don’t know how you were able to pull our room rates or somehow find the most amazing group of people to put in one seminar but you did it. How? I have no idea.  

Sometimes you just know, you just know that people will be in your life a lot longer than previous friends from your past. You know that all of the stupid conversations you’ve had with people along the way will never measure up to making you feel as normal as you did in a room with 19 strangers.

Quite frankly, it makes me re-evaluate other things in my life. Who is supportive, who I should give another chance to, and who I should cut out entirely.  

This seminar gave me new found confidence to want to conquer the unknown, easily said now of course because I don’t know if I will ever feel alone again.

Bootcamp for women that want to work in sports broadcasting hosted by @LauraOkmin Click To Tweet

Sara D: I’m not really sure where to start other than by saying thank you. There are no words to describe the impact you both had on me…it truly was life changing.

I always felt I was on the precipice of something, I just couldn’t figure out what. You’ve given me the courage to pursue this at full steam without any excuses of “I can’t” or “it’ll never happen.”

I really feel this is what I am meant to do, and I finally feel equipped to do it. I really am excited for the next chapter in my life. I know I keep saying it, but I really have never had anyone outside of my grandmother tell me that they believe in me without any reservation, that they want to see me succeed and are willing to take that chance on me.

I get emotional writing this – it’s so hard for me to fully wrap my head around the fact that both of you have said that to me, and believe it. As I said…life changing. 

Pretty awesome, right?

We work on the skills they need to succeed in this industry.and in life. Our guest for this bootcamp is Olympic Gold Medalist Picabo Street who will speak to the young women and each one will also get to interview her. I’m really excited about that.nfl sideline reporter laura okmin day in the life

Picabo is one of my favorite people in this world and she inspires women-of all ages. One of the biggest things they get out of it? A fantastic network of women, something Celeste and I didn’t have growing up in this world.

We want women looking at each other as allies, not just competition.

You’ve seen many men and women come and go in the industry – why do you believe some succeed while others fail?

Okmin: I’m asked this quite frequently when I speak to groups and I always say the same thing. Some of it is what you know, who you know and how talented you are…but a huge part of it is who sticks it out.

Who will give up every single weekend, holiday, your friends and family while moving from state to state while, in the beginning, getting paid very little.

Not everyone is built for that.

But two decades doing this I can tell you I wouldn’t give back a single weekend or holiday. I still love what I do today as much as I loved it on the first day of the job. That’s pretty wonderful to be able to say that-and feel that. You give a lot up, but man, you get so much in return

For more information on this can’t-miss event email womeninsportsbroadcasting@gmail.com

About Brian Clapp

Brian Clapp has worked in the sports media for over 14 years as a writer, editor, producer & news director. After beginning his career in Atlanta at CNN/Sports Illustrated, he switched coasts to Seattle to work at Fox Sports Northwest. In 2010, Brian began pursuing a new found passion on the digital media side, launching a successful website and then taking on the role of Director of Content for WorkinSports.com & WorkinEntertainment.com.

Recently, Brian has become addicted to Google+ and LinkedIn so add him to your circles and make him a contact. No seriously, do it.

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Comments

  1. As a young woman going into the sports world, it is amazing to know that there are other people going through the same thing. For the past 4 years I have worked with football teams and have been surrounded by men doubting my ability. Not only am I doubted for being a woman, but I am doubted because of my stature. It gets hard at times, but at the end of the day when I stop and think about if I would change anything, theres no doubt that I wouldn’t. I wouldn’t have met so many amazing people and i wouldn’t be able to tell others about the places i’ve gone and the things I have seen while working with my colleges football team. I would have been crazy not to choose the sports field as my college major. I know that there is so much more for me to see, and I would be more than willing to give up another holiday just to have the experience of a lifetime.

  2. Wow, it is so exciting to see women like Laura being resources to young women trying to break into the sports world!

  3. Thank you, Laura and Celeste! I love people dedicated to helping others. The reward is that you end up helping yourself. One of my favorite quotes: Giving is its own reward.~ Emmet Fox

    I hope to be at the event. It sounds inspiring!

    All my best,
    Jamie

    • Jamie – thanks for your kind response, definitely email Laura and Celeste they are two of the best I have ever worked with in my career and will help you immensely. – Brian

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