Four Questions with Mark Gockowski About His Recent Internship

What were your work responsibilities while working for NBC? What did a typical day at work look like?

The internship was from 9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. We began our day getting scripts and interviews ready for the day. Live on Lakeside, the show I worked on most extensively, began at 11 a.m. and ran till 12:30 p.m. Before the show began, we helped with administrative duties and helped the guests prepare for the show. During the show, we would help set up the studio with the producers to make sure it was ready for live filming. After helping the guests out of the studio, we would go back to the office and upload video content from the show to the WKYC website. I’ve been filming and editing since I was a sophomore in high school, so that was one of my favorite parts to the day. After all the videos were uploaded, the interns would help write interviews and scripts for upcoming shows that week. I also helped edit content for future commercials and blooper reals that are shown throughout later shows. The day usually went quickly because I was doing work that I really enjoyed and hope to do when I graduate.

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WKYC studios in Cleveland

What did you learn working for NBC? How has that experience changed your perspective on your college career?

In December 2012, the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Kent State University posted an internship opening for Channel 3 WKYC in Cleveland for the local show Live on LakesideLive on Lakeside is Cleveland’s version of The Today Show, hosted by two locally known news talents. When the internship was posted, I immediately contacted the producers at Channel 3. After a series of interviews and emails, I received the internship and couldn’t wait to start working in a big national news market.

It was pretty intense from the start and I was pretty nervous being surrounded by news anchors such as Russ Mitchell. Mitchell was the anchor for CBS National Evening News in New York City for many years and hosted The Early Show on CBS. Throughout my five months at WKYC, I learned that time management is a major key in life. With producing television shows, guests and ideas need to be scheduled and set weeks in advance, which makes staying on schedule very important.

I have always wanted to be a sports reporter for Cleveland sports, but I really liked the producing side of television after interning at WKYC. As a producer, you are less in the spotlight than the anchors on television but you are still making an impact in the television business. For the rest of my college career, I would love to learn more about producing in television and become a producer for the campus television station.

What did you like the most about working for NBC?

I enjoyed the people I worked with the most during my time at NBC. Live on Lakeside brings in a lot of local talent, and as an intern, I was able to work with a lot of them. I worked with Cleveland Indians President Mark Shapiro, former Cleveland Browns Head Coach Sam Rutigliano, comedian Kevin Nealon, actor Quinton Aaron from The Blindside, amongst a few others. My internship gave me the opportunity to really see what the real world is like for a reporter and publicist when they interview famous persons.

One of my favorite memories from my internship is when I was able to a story on Russ Mitchell for my news class at Kent State and I interviewed Russ and shadowed him throughout the day. Some say internships in the news business really make or break your choice in staying in the business and I loved my time at WKYC and really would like to stay in media.

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Mark Gockowski (left) with Cleveland Indians President Mark Shapiro

Do you think that is worthwhile to hold an internship while being a full-time college student? Would you recommend it to other Sigma Nu members? If so, why?

Honestly, I believe internships are best during the summer for college students. Even though I gave 110% to my internship, school, Sigma Nu, and IFC, I had a lot on my plate and it was a very busy semester. I would never change anything from it though, I enjoyed every second of my experience. In the summer, students don’t have to worry about exams or papers and can focus on the internship itself.

I would absolutely recommend the WKYC internship to another Sigma Nu brother because I learned a lot of great lessons students need to learn in the business of broadcasting and it fulfilled a lot of questions I had for myself. The in-depth work that WKYC offers for students lets you realize what your future entails.

This past spring, Brother Mark Gockowski (Kent State) interned at NBC Channel 3 WKYC in Cleveland, OH. While working at WKYC, Mark was able to gain invaluable experience producing, reporting, and publicizing for a news station. Mark currently serves the Zeta Gamma Chapter as its Recorder and is the IFC vice president of member education.

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