(Editor’s Note: This is the third in a series of stories about College of Communications students completing summer internships.)
Two Penn State students who have plenty of experience with on-campus radio stations such as ComRadio and The Lion 90.7 have accepted summer internships with CBS Radio in Pittsburgh to learn even more about the industry.
Senior broadcast journalism major Tyler Ball and junior advertising major Kaylee Naden each earned advertising sales positions with the company that controls a radio group that includes: KDKA, the nation’s first radio station, sports-talk station 93.7 The Fan and popular outlets for a variety of genres, such as 100.7 The Star and Y108.
Ball and Naden are Pittsburgh-area natives from Monaca and Belle Vernon, respectively.
Their internships consist of a variety of tasks and every day is different, but the two mainly serve as assistants to account executives. So far, they have sat in on sales calls and meetings, assisted with planning for events, compiled spot log sheets for when commercials were played for certain companies and created spot schedules for potential clients.
The two have been on the job for less than a month, and have already learned a lot of valuable information to take with them in the future. For Ball, the importance of professionalism has topped his list of takeaways, as well as how to address clients, what the business is like and how much radio ads cost at different times of the day.
“I thought I knew what professionalism was,” said Ball. “I thought it was dressing professionally and just being polite to people. There’s more to it than that. For example, when I went on the sales call, the account executive, he prepared so much for this appointment, more than I thought he would have. It wasn’t even for a client that had a lot of money. He made an example of the commercial and he got one of the DJs to record it. When we went to the meeting, he played that commercial for them. They thought that was really nice.”
Ball’s favorite experience in the position so far was the chance to go on sales calls. He appreciates the trust CBS puts in its interns.
“I think that was a really big deal because it says that they actually care about the interns and want them to learn something other than to file papers,” said Ball. “The sales call for me is probably my favorite part so far because that’s the most hands-on experience you’re going to get in this field.”
Naden noted that without teamwork, some things wouldn’t be accomplished. She has noticed how much everyone in the business works together.
“I have learned a lot through working with ComRadio at Penn State, and I really just wish to expand upon that knowledge and see how everything works when dealing with big-time advertisers, especially national companies,” said Naden.
Ball envisions a career in sales or broadcast sales, but he wouldn’t be opposed to on-air positions. Naden is keeping her options open, although her interests are more focused on advertising or sales.
At Penn State, Naden has worked with ComRadio, the Internet-based station housed in the College of Communications. She will serve as co-manager for the sales sector during the 2015-16 academic year. Ball is the president and general manager of The Lion 90.7.
“The College of Communications has prepared me in many ways,” said Naden. “It offers many different ways to get involved with clubs or organizations related to your major.”