Posted by: Katie | August 2, 2012

Passion for Radio


Tierney shares her passion for radio broadcastingin this short interview; her interest began in high school and has continued through her college experiences – such as volunteering at her university’s radio station. In addition, she had a professor that further inspired her to follow her passion and become more outgoing. She plans to get a Masters Degree in communication, but is currently completing an internship at a well-known station.

1. How did your interest in radio begin?

My interest in radio began when I was probably a freshman in high school. I used to listen to rock 102.1 in milwaukee and I would chat with two DJ’s on AOL  i.m. while they were on the air and off sometimes. They really sparked my interest and got me curious about learning broadcasting.

2. What jobs (related or not) did you have before working at your campus radion station?
I’ve worked at a gas station, Kmart, and I’ve been at the Hilton Garden Inn for about 4 years now. I was a DJ for our on campus radio station, WRST, for the past year and that really changed my life and got me more into radio and more passionate about it.

 3. How did you find out about the campus station job offering?
Our on campus station positions aren’t really like jobs, it’s completely volunteer and nobody gets paid except for our student “managers” but I got into it through my radio classes. For one of my classes, we had to have a spot on our online stream that played Jazz all day, so I got pushed into that one.  It’s because of that that I got more comfortable being on the air.

4. Could you explain the experience of that volunteer position?
 I played CMJ (College Music Journal) Top 100 selection that we have and it’s mostly a lot of indie bands, some rock, alternative and punk; NOTHING mainstream. We play NO mainstream music at WRST and that’s something the station takes pride in. We also play new and upcoming stuff that many people don’t know about. For my on-air shift, we have a programming log that tells us when to do weather or play commercial breaks with PSA’s and underwriting commericials. Underwriting commercials are made for local businesses that pay us to air their ads and that’s how many radio stations make money.

5. You’ve done music, news, and narrative pieces. Which was your favorite and why?
My favorite pieces to create are narrative ones. There is NO limit to what you can do, any topic, pretty much any length. They can be emotional, factual, or informative. My first narrative piece was on my brother becoming a marine and his journey along with my family and myself’s journey. That was a really intense one for me to do, but I did great because I was able to let my emotion come through and tell a story – not just my words. The second one I did was a “Stories of Housekeepers” kind of thing. I interviewed many of my fellow housekeepers and did a piece basically on the good, the bad and the ugly of that job. That was fun creatively too because I got to put it together any way I wanted and add fun music to it.

6. What tasks do you expect to be doing for your new radio internship?
For my radio internship, I’ll be doing some on-air work with the nightly DJ. I’ll also be doing a lot of promotions work like working at fairs, riding in our station vehicles in parades, going to local businesses that we promote and holding contests and getting the word out about the station to gain listeners. I may be creating commercials, posters for parades, just doing a lot of voice tracking so that the DJ I’m working with can analyze me and help me become a better DJ.

7. Do you have any career goals? If so, what are they?
Once this internship is over, I would really like to find an on-air job right away. I’m already getting antsy not having my weekly shift at the campus station, so I know this is what I want to do. I would also like to get a LITTLE bit into radio sales and working with business managers and going around selling air time to local businesses. In a few years, I plan to return to school to get my masters. I want to get my masters in communication so I can become a radio professor someday like my favorite professor I had that past couple years. He really inspired me to just go for it and made me become more outgoing. I want to do that for future DJ’s so that they know it’s okay to still be passionate about something.

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