Issac Bendavid was a senior at Castleton University last year. He was a communication student who was on the football team, and later commentated the games as his senior year internship.
Now, Bendavid, better known as Ike to his coworkers, is a graduate and about to begin his career at WCAX news in two weeks.
After months of interning at WCAX and learning a lot about the real-world business of mass media, he is ready and excited for the future opportunities.
Bendavid has been interning at WCAX since early summer. It was a last minute decision for him to apply online.
“I've always had this goal of being in broadcast media. I was more than willing to take a leap of faith and go anywhere,” said Bendavid, “I was fortunate enough to know of a few people who worked there and I got a tour of the station.”
After that, he got the call that he was in.
Being picked out of a group of others was flattering for Bendavid as he understands that there is significant competition in this industry.
“You're going against someone else out there,” he said, “they're looking at me.”
While the internship wasn't paid and he still had to work a full time job six days a week, Bendavid said that “even just being a fly on the wall is amazing” and that he is learning so much.
“It's was all about sticking to the goal that I really want to do this,” he said realizing that it was worth all of the hard work, “a lot of it for me was shadowing the people who I am now working with.”
Interning with WCAX has given him opportunities that he had only dreamt about.
“A year ago I was in class Levenworth studying about how news stations cover elections and then all of a sudden I'm in the newsroom following the election.”
The entire communication department at Castleton was an outlet for Bendavid. Whether it was searching for internships or writing letters of recommendation they were just as determined as he was to help him achieve his goals.
“He was a great student. I think he was one of only five, maybe six people who graduated with honors last year in the communication department,” said Bob Gershon one of Bendavid's communication professors.
However, according to Gershon his school smarts isn't what Bendavid was known for.
“I don't think anybody would have had that as the first thing they said about Issac,” Gershon said, “'they would have said, 'what a great guy.'”
Personality is a huge part of broadcast news. If the reporter is personable and relatable, they will in turn be more believable and trusted.
“If he had gone to WCAX and shown the smarts and talent that he has but had been a pain in the ass, then he wouldn't be there, Gershon said, “the best part of the deal was that everybody loves Issac.”
Bendavid believes that Castleton helped him immensely when it came to preparation for the future. He still reminisces about his time here, especially working with the football team and making such good friends.
Castleton will continue to be a great highlight in his past as he works toward his future in broadcast media.
“I've always said I love New York and I love Chicago. They are the top markets,” Bendavid said, “My goal is to be there.”
Bendavid knows what it's like to feel like the dream is too far fetched. He feels that focus and humility is the key.
“I remember in my speech at graduation I thanked my friends, my family, my Castleton teachers, my football family and teammates, and then my classmates as well,” Bendavid said, “Its important to keep those people around you but at the end of the day, you've got to believe in yourself as well.”