Cool Careers: Video Production and Radio Broadcasting

This past summer, the Career Center hosted a seminar on careers in radio broadcasting and video production. Our guest speakers were Stuart Poulton of Stuart Poulton Productions and Latangela Sherman of Cumulus Media Radio. For those who missed it, here are the main takeaways:

Video Production

Video production is the process of producing video content. It is the equivalent of filmmaking, but with images recorded digitally instead of on film stock. There are three stages of video production: pre-production, production, and post-production. Pre-production is the process in which things are set up in preparation for filming – the location, timing, script, etc..  The initial production phase is where the filming takes place. Lastly, post-production is where the editing of a video takes place. This could include changes to color, editing of scenes, voice overs and graphics.

How do I Get Started in this field?

No formal training is needed, but you will need to learn the necessary skills through hands-on experience. Get practice by creating your own videos. Most smartphones have video capabilities. Look for video editing apps that will help you polish your product. You can also upload your videos to Youtube to be seen by the world.

If you truly have a passion to get into this profession, seek out internships to help you gain critical experience, knowledge, and skills. There are also video production classes at community colleges and universities.

What equipment do I need?

The equipment needed is anything that can capture video and sound. To do more advanced things, you would need the proper software and equipment for editing. The cost can be anywhere from a few hundred to many thousands of dollars. More important than equipment is a portfolio of your work. You will need to prove that you have experience and a passion for video production. This will also show off your many talents and expertise.

How much will I Make?

As of Jul 25, 2019, the average annual pay for a Video Producer in the United States is around $55,855 a year. In major studios or production companies, you may earn up to $87,500 and as low as $21,500.

Radio Broadcasting

Do people still listen to the local radio in a world where we now have satellite radio and the internet? The answer is yes! Do people only listen to the radio for music? That is a definite no. The local radio is needed not for just entertainment, but for information and local events that only pertain to the area you live in. The radio is crucial as a free resource which is easy for everyone to access.

Jobs in Radio Broadcasting

There are a number of positions both on the air and in the background, including:

  • Sports Broadcaster/Announcer Radio Show Host
  • Disc Jockey
  • Radio News Reporter
  • TV News Reporter
  • TV News Anchor Person
  • Script Writer
  • Airtime Sales
  • Sound and Audio Technician
  • Lawyer (for legal and copyright issues)

Education

A degree in broadcasting, combined with hands-on experience working in radio, will make you an attractive candidate in this field. Local universities and various community colleges offer a degree in Mass Communication with concentrations in Radio Broadcasting, including LSU, Southern, and BRCC. There are also many internships offered locally with Cumulus Media.

Pay

The salary range for broadcasting careers vary greatly. Those working in a small town for radio station can be as little as $15000-$25,000 per year. Those in bigger markets can make from $45,000 to $90,000 per year. This is why it is important to have a versatile background covering all aspects in the field. If you have this experience, then there is more potential for growth.

Written by Alvin Coleman

Cool Careers: Videogame Design

This past summer, the Career Center hosted a seminar about careers in the video game industry, featuring guest speakers from the gaming company Electronic Arts (EA). Here are the main takeaways from that seminar:

Jobs in the Industry

  • Game Designers: come up with the concepts that eventually become video game productions. Collaborate with other members of the development team including artists, programmers, and audio engineers. A computer science background is required for this position.
  • Programmers: create the code that converts game designs into instructions video game systems can read to make everything function. A computer science background is required for this position.
  • Animators:  make the graphics come to life in a video game.
  • Artists: draw characters, scenery, and box art.
  • Audio Engineers: create/engineer sounds which add depth to the gameplay and atmosphere.
  • Voice actors: make a game come to life by voicing characters and narration, adding dramatic value to help in storytelling. Typically a background in voice-over work or acting is required.
  • Writers and editors: create the story of a game, and proofread all grammatical errors. A degree in English is usually required.
  • Lawyers: deal with copyright, censorship, and distribution rights to make sure everything with the release of a game is legally compliant. Requires a law degree.
  • Video Game Testers: test video games to detect bugs and errors in different levels of the game. Work alongside game designers and programmers to ensure that a game works flawlessly before it is released. Education needed for this is a high school diploma with a keen eye for spotting errors and following directions.

Local Job Opportunities

The easiest way to enter into the industry through EA would be the role of a video game tester. Electronic Arts has a testing center in Baton Rouge on LSU’s campus. They have opportunities for both part-time and full-time positions. You must be 17 years of age with a high school diploma, or equivalent. The presenters of the seminar actually started off as videogame testers and have moved up to receivers and EA brand ambassadors.

Pay

The video game industry has a wide range of salaries. Programmers make between $44,000 to $80,000 a year. Other non-technical jobs, such as customer service representatives, could make up to $35,000 a year.  Videogame testers can expect to start out at $11.00 an hour.

Final Thought

The video game industry is an exciting field that is constantly growing. If you are a person who loves videogames, and would like to work on doing something that you love, then this would be an excellent field to look into. EA has plenty of information listed on their website.

Written by Alvin Coleman

Cool Careers: Criminal Justice and Private Investigations

This past summer, the Career Center hosted a seminar on Careers in Criminal Justice and Private Investigations, featuring two guest speakers. The first speaker was Professor Dan Cain of the Criminal Justice Department of Bossier Parish Community College. The second presenter was Chris McCullough, a Special Investigator for the FBI.

Why Choose Criminal Justice?

Many people enter into a Criminal Justice Career to help others. You can use your skills to aid victims of crime, perform counter-terrorism and surveillance, counsel and rehabilitate criminals, or oversee the progress of a parolee. It’s worth noting that, although most people equate “criminal justice” with “police officer,” there are many more options in this field.

What Careers are there in Criminal Justice?

  • National Security Agency Police Officer:  keep NSA facilities safe and secure. Requires at minimum an associate’s degree; however, pay may be more with a bachelor’s in criminal justice. The average salary for this career is $50,283.
  • Fraud Analyst: follow a trail of clues back to the individuals who steal money or identities from banking customers. Typically requires a bachelor degrees in computer science, finance, banking or a related field. Expect to make an average salary of $46,344.
  • Ranger: Do you love the great outdoors? Do you love National Parks or Wild Life Preserves? Then you can make a career enforcing the law in these places as a ranger. Rangers are the first responders to natural or manmade threats to forest areas and rangelands. They help combat forest fires, respond to criminal activities, and perform search and rescue missions. To become a forest ranger, you must be able to possess a bachelor’s degree or higher in environmental or life sciences. You can expect to earn an average of $57,000.
  • Federal Air Marshal: in a post-9/11 world this career has become much more important to providing the safety of air travel. A federal air marshal is the first line of defense in a threat in the sky. A Marshal must be armed at all times and will be able to recognize suspicious behavior while at the same time blending in with other passengers. A master’s degree in criminal justice, police science, aviation management, or similar specialties may improve their chances of obtaining a job as a federal air marshal. Expect to earn an average of $47,000.
  • Private Investigator: get information for individuals, law offices, and corporations. Private investigators often have histories of police service and are required to have licenses to function legally. A private investigator creates a business and keeps track of expenses as well as organizes information gathered for clients. To become a private investigator, there is no formal education process, but there are some agencies that require a Certificate in the field. It wouldn’t hurt to have a degree in criminal justice. Expect to make $45,000 in this field.
  • Transit Office: make sure subways, busses, and public trains are safe. Transit and railroad police may receive training in emergency preparedness. These individuals must be comfortable working in large groups where accidents and disasters are ever present. The minimal level of education often accepted by most police departments is a high school diploma or a G.E.D certification. However, many departments around the country require at least a couple of years of college coursework, such as an associate’s degree in criminal justice. Expect to earn around $52,000.

Final Thought

Criminal Justice can be a lucrative and rewarding field. One must remember that you don’t have to be a police officer to serve the public. Every career in the criminal justice field is essential. You can find more information on Criminal Justice education programs in Baton Rouge at the BRCC Criminal Justice website.

Written by Alvin Coleman

Cool Careers: Working with Animals

This past summer, the Career Center hosted a seminar on careers in animal science. The presenter of this seminar was Jennifer Godfrey from the LSU School of Veterinary Science. In case you missed it, here are some of the main takeaways:

What Type of Jobs are there?

Veterinarian: provide medical treatment to animals as large as an elephant or as small as a snake. Requires a four-year veterinary medical degree in addition to a bachelor’s degree. Getting into veterinary school is fiercely competitive – LSU’s Vet school is one of only 30 schools in the United States with this program. One must have a very strong math and science background and strive for the highest grades possible to be considered for admission. It is best to have at least have a 3.5 GPA.  Once you finish vet school, you can expect to earn starting off at $80,000 a year. You can find out more information at the LSU vet school website.

Veterinarian Tech/ Assistant:  help veterinarians provide medical and health care for animals. This is a great alternative for people who want to work in this field without dealing with the cost and amount of education that a Veterinarian would require. You would need to pass the Veterinary Technician National Exam to become licensed as a vet tech.  Although technically only a high school education is required, most vet techs go through  certificate or associate degree programs that prepare them for the licensing exam. BRCC offers an Associate of Applied Science in Veterinary Technology, based on the requirements of the American Veterinary Medical Association. You can find out more information here at the BRCC vet tech website.

Animal Groomer: help pets look their best by cleaning them and trimming fur. You must have at least a high school diploma. Most training takes place on the job, but some choose to study at a grooming school. The median salary is around $21,260 annually, while those who make the highest salary earn more than $34,000 a year.

Kennel Attendant, Pet Sitter, and Dog Walkers: care for pets in the absent of their owners. Usually requires a minimum of a high school diploma. You can learn additional skills while on the job. Those who work in kennels or shelters can learn more about the job by taking classes through the Humane Society of the United States and the American Humane Association. Pet sitters can obtain additional education through the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters.

Final Thought

If you are a person who loves animals and providing them care, there are many opportunities to make a living from it. Being a veterinarian isn’t the only way to work with animals. You should always research and see what you feel what would be best for you. As a start, it would be an excellent idea to volunteer at a shelter or even work at a pet store like Petsmart or Petco. The opportunities are out there waiting to be discovered and experienced.

Written by Alvin Coleman

Cool Careers: Forensic Science and Crime Scene Investigation

This past summer, the Career Center hosted a seminar on Careers in Forensic Science and Crime Scene Investigation. There were two guest speakers. The first representative was Claire Shepard with LA Delta Community College, and the second was Zachary Shawn with the Louisiana State police. For those who missed it, here are the main takeaways:

what is it really like?

Most people think of the TV show “CSI” when they think of the field of forensics – but the show is not entirely realistic. In the real world, it may take months if not years to solve a case. Nevertheless, it is still an interesting field for anyone who is interested in taking a more scientific approach to Criminal Justice. There are a plethora of jobs in this field, both in the lab and out in the field. The pay in most of these careers usually range from $39,000 to around $60,000. The more advanced fields that require a doctorate degree can pay much more.

Laboratory careers

  • DNA forensic analyst: compare DNA samples taken from suspects and victims to determine whether someone was at a crime scene. Requires a degree in chemistry or biology.
  • Toxicologist: help investigators identify the causes of death that include poisons or chemicals. Also assist in the prosecution of DUI and DWI arrests and can detect the presence of drugs or alcohol in a suspect or victim’s blood. Requires a degree in chemistry, biology, or both.
  • Forensic pathologist: Also known as a medical examiner. Conduct autopsies to determine whether a case was homicide, learn the type of weapons used, and approximate a time of death. This is a position for licensed doctors and thus requires an MD.

Field Careers:

  • Bloodstain Pattern Analyst: analyze patterns of blood at the scene of a crime. This can help determine the type of weapon used, whether a struggle occurred, the direction of travel of a victim or suspect, etc.. Requires a bachelor’s degree in natural science or biology.
  • Forensic Ballistics Expert: analyze firearm patterns and residue at a crime scene. This can help with tracing a bullet back to a gun, identifying the type of firearm used, etc..
  • Arson Investigators: Use residue, ash, and other substances left after a fire to discover if a fire was intentional arson or the result of an accident. The education required for a career as an arson investigator is on par with that of police officers. While a bachelor’s degree is not required, a degree in a forensic-science-related field would increase your chances.

Final thought

If you’d enjoy using your analytical and problem-solving skills to provide justice, then this is the field for you. You just have to be sure that you are not too sensitive to violent scenes or dealing with bodily fluids. More information can be found on the Delta Community College website.

Written by Alvin Coleman

Cool Careers in Film, Entertainment, and Digital Media

The Career Center recently hosted a seminar on careers in the Louisiana Film, Entertainment, and Digital Media Industries. The presenting guest was Chris Stelly, Executive Group Director, Entertainment & Digital Media for Louisiana. Here are some of the main takeaways, in case you missed it:

Film

Most people think that “film career” is synonymous with “acting career”. However, there are a wide variety of film careers besides acting, including:

  • Photography: encompasses everything from the actual filming of a production to taking stills for promotion.
  • Digital design: working with computers to change what we see on the screen. A good example of this is in the Louisiana-filmed movie “Ray” starring Jamie Foxx, in which the ground was digitally changed to another color to reflect the look of that area.
  • Sound mixing: technicians can make a movie far more exciting or dramatic by use of sounds ranging from a simple pin drop to a loud explosion.
  • Costume/production design: an excellent choice for people who are artistic and creative and contribute to everything from furniture to costumes.
  • Hair and Make-up:  a hair and make-up artist can provide a look or style, but could also provide a special effect such as an alien, or make actors look period-appropriate for films set in other centuries.
  • Location scouting: many “scouters” go out in search of landscapes and locations to mimic other ones in order to bring a realistic experience on film. One example given was that a movie was filmed in Hammond, LA yet it was made to look as if you were in the Bronx, NY.

How to break into the industry: To get into this industry it would be a great idea to start off with small and local productions. The more experience you get, the more credible you are. For the technical side of the industry, there are many courses at local Universities and Community Colleges which you could take to improve upon and further advance in your field.

Entertainment and Music:

Louisiana has a rich and unique musical history. There are many ways a person can be involved in this industry. A few examples are:

  • Producing music for artists
  • Recording, editing, and/or mixing music
  • Performing music as a vocalist or instrumentalist
  • Promoting artists

How to break into the industry: There is no set course for breaking into the music industry – for the most part, it’s not about which classes you take in school. Instead, focus on finding and creating opportunities for yourself. Learn by doing – volunteer your time and skills for local projects. Search for internships in your field. Networking will be a huge part of your strategy – reaching out and forming connections and relationships with people in the industry.

Digital Media/Videogames:

Digital media is a rapidly growing field in Louisiana. The main field that was mentioned during this seminar was the videogame industry – everything from mobile games to console games. A video game production can be just as large as a movie. There are many different positions which are all essential to videogame production. A few examples are:

  • Art design for the general art and look of a game.
  • Sound design for effects.
  • Computer programming for the operation of the game.
  • Voice acting
  • Writing for the story and tone of the game
  • Game testing for errors or bugs
  • Legal and licensing division to ensure that everything in a game is in copyrighted and licensing standards

How to break into the industry: You must have the technology skills to get into this field. Many of the skills can be learned at two-year colleges. For the other aspects such as the legal division, you would need a legal background and education. Video game testing in this field usually requires a high school education and a keen eye to spotting errors and following instructions. In fact, Baton Rouge has a video game testing center for Electronic Arts (EA) on LSU’s campus.

Final Thought

Since the creation of the pioneering motion picture incentive program in 2002, Louisiana has created many opportunities. More information can be found on the Louisiana Economic Development website and the Film Baton Rouge website.

Written by Alvin Coleman

Cool Careers: Industrial Trades and Aviation Technology

The Career Center recently hosted a seminar on Careers in Aviation Technology and Industrial Trades. There were two guest speakers. The first representative was Brian Capone with the BRCC Aviation program. The second presenter was Connie Fabre with the Greater Baton Rouge Industry alliance. If you missed this seminar, here are some key points:

Aviation Careers

Aviation isn’t just working with airplanes. There are many branches to the tree of aviation. Here are some examples:

Pilot:  If you enjoy technology, travel, and a general interest in aviation, then a pilot would be a great career choice. To be a pilot you must attend flight school and additional safety training. You can also get additional certifications to increase your income. There are so many directions this career field can take you, the sky is literally the limit. Here are a few examples:

  • Private Pilot or VFR Pilot: an entry-level pilot position. You operate under Visual Flight Rules (VFR), meaning you can fly small aircraft while the horizon is visible. This requires a minimum of 10 hours of flight experience.
  • Military Pilot: much of the training is the same as a regular pilot, but you’d be working directly for a branch of the US military.
  • Fire, Police, and Medical Pilot: In today’s world there can be many unpredictable circumstances in which a pilot is needed. This can range from a forest fire in California, to a high speed chase, to even a rescue mission from an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico.
  • Commercial Pilot: must have an airline transport pilot certification, at least 1500 hours of flight experience, and a bachelor’s degree in aircraft operations, aviation, aeronautical engineering, or a related field. It take around three years to reach this level as a pilot.
  • Flight Instructor: must have a commercial pilot’s license, a valid third class FAA medical certificate, and a passing score on the FAA knowledge test.

Non-Pilot Aviation Careers: There are many other fields in aviation besides piloting. A few examples are:

  • Air Marshal: law enforcement officers who ride on airplanes who are trained to immediately take out a threat or conflict in order to maintain safety to all persons onboard.
  • Air Traffic Controller: make the decisions as to which planes can take off and land. Controllers seek to avoid crashes and other incidents involving aircraft by communicating directly with pilots and directing their actions.  They have an enormous amount of responsibility and must be good at problem solving. This is a very rewarding career which starts at around $40k, and many well-seasoned controllers make close to $100k.
  • Aviation Mechanic: If something breaks, it must be fixed. There is a growing need for aircraft mechanics today. This field pays very well also – expect to make an average starting salary of $50,000 per year or around $26 per hour. BRCC offers training for this profession. An alternative is to get training from the military.

INDUSTRIAL TRADES

There are many high-paying industrial careers in Louisiana. Oil, natural gas, and chemical plants are a vital part of the state’s economy. A few examples of these jobs are:

  • Plant Operator: supervises the operation of an industrial plant. Operators are needed in utilities, power plants, or chemical plants such as gas extraction facilities, petrochemical or oil refineries. Education for this career can be obtained through a two-year degree from a community college. Average pay for this career can start at $21.00 an hour, and salary will rise quickly. The average chemical plant operator in Louisiana earns $67,000 per year.
  • Welder: fabrication and assembly of metal structures and equipment through the use of welders, cutters, shapers and measuring tools. Welders are needed not only in chemical plants, but general construction of buildings to ship yards. Education for this career can be obtained by apprenticeships which range from 6,000 to 8,000 hours in length, or three to four years at 2,000 hours per year. Much of the training for this career path can be completed at a community college or vo-tech school. Welding jobs in Louisiana can average around $53,000 a year.
  • Chemists: process, mix and examine natural compounds to determine how they interact with other chemicals. To become a chemist one would need a four-year degree from an accredited university. Many industrial companies need both chemists and chemical engineers.

Final Thoughts

Aviation is a diverse and rewarding field that anyone who is interested in flying or who enjoys  technical hands-on care should look into. Check BRCC‘s offerings in this field.

Louisiana’s industrial field is constantly growing. It is a great alternative for graduating high school seniors who don’t want a traditional four-year degree. More information can be found on GBRIA’s website.

Written by Alvin Coleman

Tech Talk: Learning Express Job and Career Accelerator

The East Baton Rouge Parish Library recently acquired a new resource to assist jobseekers: the Job and Career Accelerator service of the Learning Express database.

How to Access It:

The Learning Express database is free to anyone with an East Baton Rouge Parish Library card. Go to the library website, then click on The Digital Library. Choose to search the “A-Z List”, then find “Learning Express 3.0” which takes you to the Learning Express database. Now click on “Job and Career Accelerator”.

How it’s organized:

There are six sections to this resource.

Find a Career Match: These assessments can be a good career planning tool for people who don’t know where to start. The Interest Matcher asks you about how much – or how little – you are interested in doing certain types of tasks.  The Skills Assessment is similar, except it asks about what skills you already have.  Each assessment will, based on your answers, provide you with a list of professions and types of work which match your interests or skills.

Explore Occupations: This tool provides detailed information about 1000 different careers.  There are several different options for how to search and narrow down results. For each job title, the database gives information on job description, average salary, projected demand, education needed, skills preferred, and more.

Search for Jobs and Internships: This takes you directly to job postings and internship opportunities on Indeed.

Tools to Get Hired: This section provides samples of job search-related documents, including resumes, cover letters, networking letters, and post-interview thank-you notes. There is also a how-to-interview tutorial and a resume-building tool.

Career Library: This section has in-depth guides on how to start a career in several common fields, including healthcare, teaching, paralegal, police, and culinary arts. There are also specialized guides for how to change careers and how to use social networking in the job search.

School and Scholarship Finder: The Scholarship Finder helps you search among 24,000 different scholarships to find scholarships for which you might qualify. The School Finder helps you locate a school that meets your educational goals and needs. It includes a Quick Match tool that helps you find schools that might be a good match for you.

What do we like most about this resource?

One-stop shop: This database brings together a lot of resources for different aspects of job searching and career planning under one roof. You can take an assessment, choose a career, write a resume, apply for jobs, and find a school, all under one roof. That can be very convenient.

Good information: There are lots of tools here to help you become a savvy jobseeker. For instance, the sample letters in the Tools to Get Hired section are helpful examples. And the guides in the Career Library are extremely informative, if there is a guide for your chosen career.

Resume Keywords: This was our absolute favorite part of the database. The Resume Builder contains a list of Job-Specific Keywords which you can use to plug into your resume. For example, if you look for “Accountant”, a long list of keywords and skills related to accounting and finance will come up. You can then choose some of those keywords to fill out the “Skills” section of your resume. This is a great way to make sure your resume bursts with the key skills that will grab a hiring manager’s attention.

What do we dislike most about this resource?

Derivative: This database has very little in it which is original. The job postings come from Indeed. The career information comes from ONET. And the general structure of the resources comes from Career Cruising, another career database which we’ve discussed extensively.

Resume Builder: We know, we seem to be contradicting ourselves. We said that we loved the Keywords section of the Resume Builder. And that’s true. But we found the rest of the Resume Builder inflexible and hard to use. It uses a one-size-fits-all formula for the resume template, making it difficult to tailor a resume to suit your specific skills and audience. We much prefer referring our patrons to our own resume templates, which are 100% customizable.

Written by Richard Wright and Lynnette Lee

Cool Careers Kick Off!

The Career Center’s Cool Careers Summer Series is a set of weekly career exploration seminars. Its goal is to expose teens and young adults to different career options so they can determine what they’d like to do for a living. Each free seminar features guest speakers who are experts in the chosen field. Our 3rd annual series kicks off tomorrow! Here is the complete schedule:

May 29, Finding and Getting College Scholarships: College is getting more expensive by the year. The good news is, there are hundreds of scholarships out there that can help you pay for college without getting expensive loans.  Come and learn how and where to research the right scholarships for you and how to successfully apply to get them. Our guest presenter for this session is academic counselor Meagan Davenport.

June 5, Careers in Louisiana Film, Entertainment, and Digital Media Industries: Louisiana consistently outperforms the South and the U.S. in creating jobs and economic opportunities for its citizens. Louisiana Economic Development is the leader in job creation and development. Chris Stelly, Executive Group Director of Entertainment & Digital Media, will be here to explain the many opportunities that available in these creative mediums.

June 12, Careers in Aviation and High-Paying Skilled Trades: Greater Baton Rouge Industry Alliance’s Connie Fabre will inform us which industries are in-demand and the paths one can take to become a skilled tradesperson.  Learn all about high-paying jobs which require less than a year of formal education. Baton Rouge Community College’s Aviation Department will share information regarding the many rewarding, in-demand and well paid careers available within the Industrial Field such as Airframe Mechanics, Powerplant Mechanics, and Aviation Maintenance.

June 19, Careers in Forensic Science and Crime Scene Investigation: We welcome Claire Shepard from Monroe’s Louisiana Delta Community College’s Forensic Science and Technology program. This intriguing program offers an exciting look into crime scene investigations and the technology used to solve mysteries, reconstruct crime scenes, analyze various incidents and document evidence as presented in a case file.

June 26, Careers in Animal Science: A favorite of the Cool Careers Series, Louisiana State University’s Veterinary School wildlife program will be here.  Several veterinarians will give an overview of the many career opportunities caring for animals and introduce us to some birds of prey they are currently caring for.

July 10, Careers in Private Investigation and Criminal Justice: We welcome Bossier Parish Community College’s Dan Cain, with the Criminal Justice program. Professor Cain will inform us about the varied paths to success in this high demand field, including all the things you can do with a criminal justice degree besides police work.  Expect some great success stories from this speaker. Chris McCullough, a private investigator, will share his story of conducting background investigations for the Federal Government.

July 17, Careers in Broadcasting and Video Production: Stuart Poulton, CEO of Stuart Poulton Video Production Company, is a dynamic and innovative entrepreneur who creates video and other digital content that advertising agencies, businesses, and entrepreneurs use to market brands, products, and ideas. He will share his experiences in the exciting industry of video production and its related fields such as lighting, audio, videography, and editing. LaTangela Sherman, a native Baton Rougian, the Production Director of Cumulus Media BR, and leading on-air personality for WEMX-FM, will be here to share with us how she began her radio career as a teenager and as the host of a teen talk show.

You can register for any of our Cool Careers programs here or by calling 225-231-3733.

Written by Cynthia Payton

How to Succeed in Cosmetology

The Career Center recently hosted a seminar on Careers in Cosmetology. Guest presenter Ce’Keisha Williams (known professionally as KeishaDstylist) offered insights about what she has learned from running a successful independent cosmetology business. If you missed the seminar, here are some of the main takeaways:

What does it take to succeed in this field?

Cosmetology is the professional skill or practice of beautifying the face, hair, skin, and nails. Cosmetologists can be hairstylists, makeup artists, nail technicians, or skin care specialists. But in order to make it in the industry, according to Cekeisha, one needs to sharpen one’s skills in these five areas: Identity, Integrity, Mentoring, Insecurities, and Inspiration.

Identity

  • Know your strengths and weaknesses; likes and dislikes
  • Know your interests to narrow down where you fit in the cosmetology field
  • Personal branding
    • Canceling appointments and being late negatively affect your identity as a cosmetologist
    • Word of mouth is very important

Integrity

  • How you present yourself
    • Avoid cursing and unprofessional language
    • Be punctual and reliable
    • Maintain a professional appearance
  • Separate professional life and personal life
  • Be honest and genuine

Mentoring

  • You are always learning; there is never a point in any field where you know everything
  • Mentoring can help you reach new heights in your skill level
  • A good mentor can provide opportunities professionally and open doors for you

CeKeisha describes the cosmetology field as a team where everyone helps build each other up. Most cosmetologists can’t make it on their own and can’t do everything themselves; they need the support of others to succeed.

Insecurities

  • Work on your insecurities and weaknesses; turn them into confidence and strength
  • Setting small goals for yourself can help you reach your larger goals
  • For example, if you don’t like public speaking, you can try accompanying someone only talking some of the time before you present or teach by yourself.
  • You may not become the best at whatever your weakness is but you can always improve.

Inspiration

CeKeisha also teaches cosmetology skills and strives to inspire others to follow their passions. Her passion is education, but yours might be hair, or nails, or something completely different. Whatever it is that inspires you, CeKeisha advises, use it to inspire others.  She encourages everyone to share their talents and teach others what they know and learn from others as well.

Although CeKeisha approached the topic from the perspective of a cosmetologist, we found her advice to be useful for any jobseeker or entrepreneur. We hope that you are able to incorporate these themes into your own professional development.

Written by Kelly Brown