Could you see yourself having a high paying career where you can dress casually? Cheryl Ellis from HEC-TV could.
Ellis has been an employee with HEC-TV (Higher Education Channel Television)—St. Louis’s education, arts, and culture station—for 8 years, but has been working in the field for 25 years.
She actually started her TV career as a secretary. Ellis became interested in the behind-the-scenes work of a TV station. So, when a position opened up, she moved to the production room. After working there for a while, she was given responsibility for handling the station’s master control “I saw that you could wear jeans and a t-shirt, I said, ‘hey I wanna do this!’”
Her job consists of monitoring all the shows and making sure everything is running on time and in place. It is a challenging position. “If you are off by one second, you could be fired,” says Ellis. “Being organized is your life line to this job.”
She sits behind her desk with very expensive tools and equipment where she monitors the station’s TV cameras. She also keeps track of the TV station’s four different channels. There is a screen on her desk that was updated because of the new digital TV, which has the airing times of the shows and the block times that come on before another show.
With the new digital TV system, everything is much more organized, says Ellis, which makes her job much easier.
However, there are still challenges to her job. There are only two workers for the master control, and they must split the day and night shifts. In addition, there is no break for lunch. Cheryl must stay in her station unless handling personal business.
But, after all that hard TV watching all day, Ellis states that the reward is a salary that is about $60,000 to 93,000 a year.