(February 11, 2020) Jake Nichols has lived in Tennessee his entire life, and his new position on the sports staff at WDKN in Dickson will keep him in his home state a stretch longer.
An STAA member, Nichols shares that the position offers much more than a familiar location. “It just happened to work out that my hometown is an hour and a half from my new job, but I would’ve gone almost anywhere for an opportunity like this.”
He continues, “It gives me an opportunity to cut my teeth in radio play-by-play, and being right outside Nashville could open some incredible doors.” He also anticipates the on-the-job learning opportunities that will come with working in a small town.
Nichols is a former sports editor at the Tennessee Journalist. He has also done freelance sports reporting and photography for The Mountain Press in Sevierville. Prior to that, he broadcast with Diamond Clear Media, worked as a student assistant with SEC Network/VFL Films, and served as an on-air personality at WUTK Radio in Knoxville.
A 2019 graduate of the University of Tennessee, Nichols heard about the WDKN job through a college connection. “I posted my play-by-play reel on STAA, and a former colleague from UT saw it as he was about to step down from his position as sports director.”
In preparation for his interview, Nichols wisely researched his new boss to learn shared interests and talking points. He says, “I think that my ability to connect with my boss really helped. I also think my reiteration of my passion for radio really helped to secure the position.”
Nichols joined STAA in October of 2019 after a friend at UT Knoxville recommended STAA to him. He’d also heard about STAA through researching several broadcasters.
“[STAA] connects you with opportunities you might never know about otherwise. It gives you a foot in any door before anyone else.”