“Anything in media.” This is often the response when you ask people which career they would like to pursue. I also gave exactly the same answer and dreamed of embarking on a career in the media industry, which is both exciting and diverse: meeting famous people, wearing designer clothes, drinking champagne, going to after show parties. This is how I imagined a career in media to be.
Therefore, after leaving school, I started searching for a university course focusing on media and communication. I remember that I was taken aback by the sheer volume of courses on offer. Almost every university offers programmes in media management, media studies, communication studies, etc. But where is the difference? Which course would suit me best? What can I expect to learn? How will it help me to find a job? In spite of extensive research, all these questions remained unanswered.
I eventually enrolled on a business administration course at the University of Passau, which impressed my parents more than it did me. “It seems like the safest option,” is what they said. After two unhappy semesters and innumerable monotonous lectures, I decided to abandon the course and enjoy a gap year abroad – to go on a journey of self-discovery, and all that…
Back to reality
However, after returning home without a clear goal, I decided not to give up on my dream and undertook a six-month placement in a PR agency. This is where I realised the world of media is less about glitz and glamour and more about hard work. Creativity, initiative, flexibility and discipline are what is required in this business. Deadlines, research and presentations are the bread and butter of this profession. Media activities are diverse and numerous.
It quickly became obvious to me that you should have a rough idea of the direction you want to head in before starting a course. Are you more interested in the business, technical or the creative side of things? As it is important to select a degree course according to your interests, even if they do all sound relatively similar.
I discovered an interest in the PR sector and then decided to enrol in Communications & Marketing at ISM. As a result of the course, I have realised just how important it is to be receptive to new ideas, since the media landscape is forever changing. Gaining practical skills and experience are also essential in this field. I am now in the second semester and have not regretted my choice for a moment.
Even though my initial perceptions were somewhat inaccurate, I am now living the “anything in media” dream. The only difference is that the “anything” has now turned into “something”.
Author: Yang Liu