by Juseph G. Elas
Then you had better master the rules of the game until you play it better than they can. – Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha
We always say that life is a game, play it well and you shall be rewarded; play it poorly and the consequences may be severe. And I know a woman who played it so well at her young age that life wasn’t entirely unfair to her.
Her name is Chrisel Almonia.
Her ascent to success is a story that is unheard of to many. She was a graduate of Mass Communications at Western Mindanao State University and she majored in Broadcasting. Among her colleagues, she’s the only one who pursued a career in the media industry. She shared that most probably this is tantamount to a decision she made in the past.
“Speaking of the course, Mass Communications, it is really my choice. No once forced me into it because first and foremost it is really the field of my interest; it is where my passion and focus lies. And second, it is where my talent lies.” Shared Chrisel.
She pointed it out that her parents once tried to ask her to take up Teacher’s Education in college but Chrisel followed what her heart dictates.
But who is Chrisel Almonia to start with? We all know her by name since that’s all that we can hear whenever her reports on Dateline Zamboanga, the primetime news program of GBPI TV 11, would be aired.
Chrisel describes herself now as what she was before; simple, friendly, sometimes moody, and most importantly, the person who does her best in everything she do. “My friends still see me as the person they met years before.” She added.
Road To Success
One might wonder how she landed with the job she has right now. The tale began when she was still doing her practicum in the same agency where she is employed right now.
It began when news anchor, Mr. Ronnie Lledo, asked Chrisel if she wants to start working for them as a researcher and contributor in December 2013. Uncertain of where it might lead her, Chrisel took the opportunity and during that time, while she was still an intern, she was, also, already earning.
“You have to give your best even if you’re just and still and intern because you supervisor is already looking if they are going to hire you after or not,” shared Chrisel.
Indeed, most of our professors would tell us the same.
In the world of media, lax means irresponsible journalist. That is why, Chrisel shared some hardships she encountered when she was still starting out as a neophyte in the industry.
She shared that they are required to look for four stories in a day. For an intern, much like me, that would be a torture. But Chrisel shared a tip on how to deal with such a common problem in the broadcast media industry.
“It’s hard to get a chance to interview a regional director given their busy schedules. So, to site an example, if I’ll go to CHED and interview the regional director, I will assure that I will be able to ask that director all issues concerning CHED.” Said Chrisel.
She elaborated by saying that it doesn’t matter if the issues are still premature of haven’t risen yet, what matters most is you preempt those issues because that will help you in the future. Also, updating yourself will also be a plus factor. “You should always read and do research to keep yourself abreast with the latest news around,” she said.
Also, having connections count. Sometimes, her job is made easier because the news itself will come knocking at her door thanks to her contacts. It all boils down to proper public relations at the end of the day.
One may say that she already has a good career going, that the wheels of life will forever turn for Chrisel Almonia, that her future is already secured. But Chrisel still has her eyes ahead; always looking forward for upward mobility.
Asked what her other plans for the future would be, she said, “I only plan to stay here [GBP1 TV 11] for only one year. I just want to establish, first, my name as a media practitioner, and of course experience. And then, afterwards, if better opportunities would come, then . . . let’s see what will happen.” She shared.
Chrisel is considering to take a sideline job like teaching in a university, just to fulfill one of her parent’s would-be dream for her. She plans to take up a Master’s degree, soon. But her superiors in Dateline Zamboanga advised her to take up law instead. But Chrisel would want to take her time and doesn’t want to rush and regret at the end.
“I want first to mold my personality first before I move to a bigger and complex sphere of the media industry.” Chrisel said.
She quoted one of her professors in college in the person of Prof. Ma. Marissa Makasiar saying, “It’s really better have a plan in life so that you are guided of your path.”
Give Your Subjects Importance
Chrisel also shared that the media industry is like a very big picture that encompasses everything.
Most of us students disregard the importance of our minor subject. Chrisel realized that such mentality should be eradicated because if you really want to pursue a media career, you must value and inculcate all the lessons you’ve learned into your mind.
“Physics, mathematics, and even euthenics will come out once you’re on field already. And they will come out in the most unexpected of occasions.” Chrisel shared.
“That is why to all masscom students today, you must really give importance to all of your subjects even if they are only minor subjects. Because you will really use that in the future because you have no idea where life will lead you to.” she added.
Chrisel as an intern is different from Chrisel as a professional news reporter. She said that you really have to be serious once you started working because the world will not always be a child’s playground.
Asked if she is going to look back in her college days, what one lesson she will never forget is, “take things seriously.” She elaborated by saying that your four years in college are very crucial for you to discover yourself. Take things seriously – your subjects – everything, because once you go out there in the real world, everything will always be serious.