The sports broadcasting job market is hard; more so during a pandemic, even for someone as talented as Jonah Karp. One year after graduating from college, though, Karp is joining WZDX FOX 54 in Huntsville, AL as a sports multi-skilled journalist.
“Graduating during a pandemic was, admittedly, mentally challenging,” Karp states.
Karp is a 2020 graduate of Syracuse. He twice earned STAA All-American honors as one of the nation’s most outstanding collegiate sportscasters. Still, the job market was exceptionally hard during the pandemic.
Thin Job Market
“In the beginning, I relished the excess time and would spend my days reaching out to people in the industry. Quickly, that daily routine became tiresome. It was especially difficult to land a sports broadcasting job when sports were absent…no one was hiring people to talk about sports,” Karp recalls.
Karp stayed sharp and passed time freelance broadcasting with Stony Brook University and Wagner College. He first saw the FOX 54 Huntsville opportunity in an STAA Job Leads email.
“I looked at my STAA emails every day. This organization is amazing at making sure its members see a multitude of job listings on a daily basis. There are sports broadcasting jobs out there! STAA makes it easy for those who want them to seek those jobs out.”
Once sports came back, so did the job opportunities. Karp says. “I was all over the job boards, and being an STAA member kept my sanity. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t experience moments of frustration and disappointment. I stayed positive by keeping busy: networking, working, applying to jobs. I kept my brain active with puzzles — I was always focused on the light at the end of the tunnel. That mentality got me through the pandemic.”
Karp’s sportscasting excellence is no accident. He’s worked hard and counts Major League Baseball broadcasters Jason Benetti, Gary Cohen and Howie Rose among his mentors. Now, he’s taking all he’s learned South to The Rocket City.
“This opportunity allows me to hone my skills as a journalist and storyteller. I’m in a region of the world to which I’ve never been. Now I’m tasked with telling stories the surrounding community has never heard. This is a passionate sports city. I’m up for the challenge!