By AJ Norwood
In the world of broadcast journalism, not many people can say that they are fortunate enough to have been accepted into an on-air talent position on their first try. However, Seth Austin, a Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, native and a 2013 graduate of Ohio University, is an exception to that rule.
Austin, a Broadcast Communications Specialist at the University of Mississippi, got his start in broadcast journalism in college.
“I went to school for broadcast journalism and started my career in media relations in the Arena Football League. I made the move when I got the opportunity to go to Birmingham and get to work on local TV,” Austin said. “I spent about three years working at WBMA in Birmingham, the ABC affiliate. I had a friend that worked here and said they were opening up an on-camera reporter job.”
Austin said he took that opportunity to be in front of the camera.
“It was an opportunity to move from being a producer to being an on-camera personality. I jumped at the opportunity and applied and got the job here,” Austin said. “It was really kind of a first opportunity for me to get in front of the camera more with my pursuit of broadcast journalism.”
During his time working in broadcasting at the University of Mississippi, Austin said there was a delicate balance between being an Ole Miss employee and calling Ole Miss games. However, he recalled what he says was his biggest opportunity during his time in Oxford.
“The biggest professional opportunity that I’ve gotten is to call the softball regional here two seasons ago. It was Ole Miss, Louisiana, Southeast Missouri, and Tennessee Chattanooga…I got to call all the games,” he said. “It went the distance with as many games as you could possibly play, with the deciding game between Ole Miss and Louisiana. Ole Miss walked it off in thrilling fashion. That was really fun to be a part of.”
While a career in broadcast journalism can be extremely difficult, Austin says that the opportunity that he was granted has given him something positive to look forward to.
“My favorite thing is getting to know and watch the student-athletes grow up,” Austin said. “You meet them as freshmen, and then they leave sometimes after four, sometimes after three, sometimes after five years,” Austin said. “It’s just really fun to get to know them and see how they grow up and mature. It’s good to see what kind of people they’re going to be when they leave here. Getting to tell their stories…I would say that that’s probably my favorite aspect of it all.”