Sports broadcasters, or more commonly referred to as “sportscasters”, specialize in one of two streams: the first being play-by-play and the second being analytical. Opportunities for work in Canada exist in both television and radio, however for the aspiring freelancer, entry-level positions can typically be found through smaller stations. This type of work can be quite stressful at times, with tight deadlines that must be adhered to. An upside to this line of work is that it is usually performed indoors within a climate control studio environment. As well, in addition to during game coverage, sportscasters will often provide commentary and analysis pre and post-game too. They are found behind the scenes providing insider information.
Now, you may be wondering about what it takes to become a sports broadcaster, whether you’re in Toronto or in another part of Canada. The first step is that you must be a sports enthusiast! You must possess a love for sports in general and at the same time have a sport that you’re passionate about. Most broadcasters specialize in broadcasting the one sport that they know best. Knowledge of the sport can be acquired through watching games on TV, on the computer or even live in person. This is just half of the equation though. The second step is to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in broadcasting, communications, or another directly relevant stream. By completing a 4-year program, you will become equipped with the knowledge and tools necessary to succeed in your career. Curriculums typically include courses in mass media, English communication and writing, audio production, broadcast journalism as well as communication law. While you are completing your Bachelor’s, it is advised that you take any and all opportunities to announce games for college / university teams. Working for the schol can provide invaluable experience as well as connections into the industry. While doing this, you should also create a reel to showcase your skills to any future employers. The third step is to complete an internship. By doing this at an accredited program and institution, you will gain extensive on-the-job training under the supervision of skilled industry professionals. Once you have completed these steps, the final step is to begin your career and take on relevant, experience-building work. This work can be in the form of journalism, reporting or even a production assistant or equipment operator. There is nothing wrong with starting out in one of those positions since they serve the purpose of enabling you to demonstrate your ability for sports announcing. If you are very successful, you may just end up hosting your own television or radio show one day.
If you have any questions about becoming a sports broadcaster in Canada, I am the right person to ask!