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Sports Reporter - Danville, Va.

Discussion in 'Journalism Jobs' started by JBondurant804, Jul 28, 2016.

  1. JBondurant804

    JBondurant804 Member

    The Danville Register & Bee, a BH Media paper in Danville, Va., is looking to fill an immediate opening for a sports reporter. This is to replace Evan Slavit, who took a position in New Jersey.

    Sports Reporter - Danville, Virginia, United States - BH Media

    More about the job:

    This is a stepping-stone gig. I'll have been here two years next month, and I'm currently pursuing options to make an exit, so another opening will be forthcoming here before too long. But it's understood from the start that you're not expected to spend five to ten years of your career here. You grind it out for one to three years, then hopefully land a gig at a bigger paper or a better job in general. There are plenty of people who have worked here in the past who have gone on to do big things.

    That being said, it's a two-person sports staff. You split coverage of eight high schools on a regular basis, seven in Danville and Pittsylvania County, one in Yanceyville, N.C. Averett University is NCAA Division III in the USA South Athletic Conference, and Danville Community College is NJCAA Division III Region X and fields teams in volleyball and baseball. Averett is not very good in football, their volleyball program is pretty good, men's basketball is competitive, women's basketball is meh, as is baseball, softball went to the NCAA tournament for the second time in 2015, didn't have quite as much success this past season. They're also adding men's lacrosse and wrestling and bringing back women's lacrosse for 2017-18. They're completing a new $3 million football/soccer/lacrosse stadium in the coming weeks too. You'll also get out to Hargrave Military Academy and cover their national championship-winning post-graduate basketball program. Head coach A.W. Hamilton is a class act, as is everyone else up there, and they're probably the easiest to work with. Montrezl Harrell and Terry Rozier are two big names who have come out of the PG program in recent years. Last year they had Derek Funderburk (Ohio State) and DeRiante Jenkins (VCU) as their big D-I talent. Braxton Beverly, who had previously committed to Miami of Ohio, dropped 70 points in a game last season. In 2014-15, they had players sign letters of intent to Wichita State, UNC-Wilmington (head coach Kevin Keatts was the PG coach prior to Hamilton taking over), Rutgers and Auburn. When NASCAR comes to Martinsville Speedway (35 minutes west of Danville), you'll help put together a four-six page weekend preview, and you'll get to go out to the track and compete with other BH papers (Martinsville Bulletin, Roanoke Times, Greensboro News & Record) for coverage. You'll also get to go out to Virginia International Raceway and cover MotoAmerica motorcycle racing, NASCAR K&N East Series racing and the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship when they come to town. In addition, you've got South Boston Speedway which is home to three-time Whelen All-American Series national champions Lee Pulliam and Phillip Morris, Matt Bowling is actually leading the national points right now too. And on top of that you get to cover the Danville Braves, Rookie affiliate of the Atlanta Braves, in the always fun Appalachian (pronounced App-uh-latch-en) League.

    The job is full-time, so 40 hours a week, with opportunities throughout the year for OT. It pays $12.02 an hour. Every two weeks your pay is just north of $700 when you factor in benefits and taxes. It's not much, but the cost of living in Danville is low. They haven't given raises in almost a decade, so don't expect one after a year or two here. BH offers full health, vision and dental insurance, along with a 401(k). You get two weeks vacation to start, a week of sick time and a floating holiday. You get paid holidays, and if you work on something like July 4 or Memorial Day, for example, you'll get 45 days to use it or lose it.

    There is no sports editor here. You deal with a newsroom editor and assistant editor. Both of whom are nice guys, but they don't know much of anything about sports. The assistant editor will tell you flat-out he doesn't know jack about sports. The editor will throw you stories from time to time, but other than that he'll just be a good extra set of eyes to look over your copy. Also, the paper is designed and printed in Lynchburg. So all of your correspondence with the copy desk will be through email. The Lynchburg sports editor will occasionally pop in to Danville to offer constructive criticism.

    There's just one photographer on staff here as well. He's also a nice guy, and he does great work. He's got the Virginia AP awards to back it up. But keep in mind that a good amount of the time he won't be able to shoot games because he'll be on a news assignment. So if you have photography skills then more power to you.

    There's also been a big push at BH in video content. Me and the other guy have produced probably more video content for our website than anyone else in the newsroom. Of course their video emphasis comes on iPhone video. So if you have a non-iOS phone and don't want to pay for a company iPhone, you're going to be at a supreme disadvantage.

    Also you'll get a ton of experience posting content to the web using our content management system. It's funny in that the sports guys have about the same level of experience publishing web content as the editors and more experience than anyone else on the news side. The editors usually post all their stuff online.

    But to wrap things up, yes it says they're looking for someone with 1-2 years of experience already. I'd say closer to two years of experience already will be ideal. You have to be willing to work independently and have a good eye for news and solid features. Unless your college experience was at a big-time college daily or you interned at a big paper somewhere, rookies need not apply. You're going to need a good bit of patience and a tolerance for some crap.

    If you want to get experience getting clips covering a multitude of sports living in a small town, this job is for you. All BS aside I've enjoyed my time in Danville. I'm glad I took this job, but I'm sure as hell going to be glad when I move on.

    High school football season starts August 26, so they want to get someone in here before the season starts.

    Feel free to message me if you have any questions.
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2016
  2. SFIND

    SFIND Well-Known Member

    Why? Seriously that's a head-scratching statement man. If you're editing video on a computer and uploading online from there it doesn't matter what camera (or phone) recorded the video. And even if you edit the video on your phone (which you can do just as easily on Andriod or Windows Phone) and then move the file to a computer to upload, it still makes no difference what the video was recorded on.
  3. JBondurant804

    JBondurant804 Member

    The process for uploading video is cooky. You have to upload the video to a separate site to process then upload the processed video to the website. The site needed to process the video has an app only available for iPhone. So when you're needed to file video remotely it adds some steps to the process. Maybe I should have worded it differently, but corporate encourages you to have an iPhone for that purpose. Obviously it doesn't matter if you're going back to the newsroom to upload it, but having the iPhone saves you from having to take those extra steps. I had a Galaxy SII when I first started and I was frowned upon for trying to make it work that way.
  4. Mystery Meat II

    Mystery Meat II Well-Known Member

    A very comprehensive overview, with one glaring omission: You also get to be among the many stars to populate the Tuckerverse.
  5. Jake_Taylor

    Jake_Taylor Well-Known Member

    It's a good place for a young reporter to start out getting to cover a variety of stuff. But man, I'm pretty sure that's the same salary I made there about 12 years ago.
    JBondurant804 likes this.
  6. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    12.02 an hour is about 22,000 a year. That shouldn't be legal.
  7. Waldo9939

    Waldo9939 Active Member

    Hey maybe they can picket for the $15/HR wage.
    JBondurant804 likes this.
  8. JBondurant804

    JBondurant804 Member

    Believe me, I know the Richmond Times-Dispatch (another BH Paper) has a newsroom union that worked out raises and benefits with the company two years ago. I wish we could have unionized. I threw it out there before. Can you unionize with just seven people though?
  9. Waldo9939

    Waldo9939 Active Member

    Negative. Not enough there. Was just saying. Especially if you haven't gotten a raise in 12 plus years. Which is sad in and of itself. I'm
    JBondurant804 likes this.
  10. eclapt44

    eclapt44 Member

    $12 an hour.... I don't care how low the cost of living is. I hate this industry.
    Suggswriter and JBondurant804 like this.
  11. JBondurant804

    JBondurant804 Member

    Sooner or later they're going to have to give raises only because the wage they're paying now won't be sustainable enough to avoid living in poverty. I'm lucky I found a two-bedroom apartment for $550 a month in a good part of town. But no young journalist either still relatively new to the business or someone fresh out of college is going to live in squalor and do a good job in this position.
  12. jeffpatterson

    jeffpatterson New Member

    I was making 22 and change when I was there a decade ago. Yet somehow those were the best days ever. Everything was dirt cheap and the staff went out or hung out seemingly every night.
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