Anthony Gallegos’ career path has consisted of unexpected events that forced him to reevaluate his plans, make new goals and remain resilient.
Anthony arrived at Temple University in 1998 from Irvington, N.J. with a lifelong love of music. Almost immediately, he began to immerse himself in radio by interning at WRTI-FM, a public radio station on Temple’s campus. “I started board operating and producing different shows my first semester at the radio station.” He would continue to build his skills in the radio industry through internships at commercial and hip-hop stations in Philadelphia.
A fellow Temple student informed Anthony about the T. Howard Foundation’s Internship Program in 2001. He applied, and was accepted into the Foundation’s Final Talent Pool. Shortly thereafter, Anthony was placed in an internship at Pegasus Communications in Philadelphia. His Pegasus responsibilities exposed him to the full process of producing advertisements, from pitching clients to the actual production of ads, which sparked his interest in television. He discovered that he could combine the audio production skills he acquired in radio with the visual components of television.
After completing the transformative internship at Pegasus, Anthony returned to Temple to complete his final year of college. Although he wasn’t a college graduate yet, Anthony already had an impressive résumé featuring several internships and had made contacts in Philadelphia’s large media industry.
Anthony’s transition from college to career, however, was not as smooth as he anticipated. The terrorist attack of 9/11 occured two weeks into his senior year, and as a result, many companies suffered and people lost jobs. Pegasus’s parent company was sold and the company no longer exists. “All hell broke loose in our country and the connections with my internships disappeared,” he recalled. “All of my contacts in the industry were gone.”
Anthony, along with many others, was job hunting in a tough economy and could not find work in the media industry. After graduating from Temple in 2002 with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, he moved home to New Jersey and took the first job he could find—a customer service representative position at a credit card company. It only took three months on that job before Anthony decided he had to follow his passion and return to the media industry.
Stay tuned for part 2 of Anthony Gallegos’s story in navigating the vast media industry.
Question: What would you do if you lost touch with the majority of your career contacts at the time of your job search? Reply in the comments section!