It was a quarter passed seven and I received a phone call from a colleague of mine with the surprising and exciting news, that the organization that I am currently working for will be submitting an application for a community broadcasting station and will have a high chance of getting approved. That was just the beginning of a long conversation that ended with the question “Do you want to be the stations program manager?” In utter shock I had an automatic flashback of the visit our class had by Jim Militello. All I could remember at that moment was his positive voice and all the experience he had. After that brief moment of silence my flashback was interrupted by the “Hello!” of my colleague. I told her that I was honored to be offered such a position and she continued to talk about what the whole station was going to be about.
After that she spent another 35 minutes talking about other things that didn’t pertain to the good news, and about five minutes into that 35 minutes I found myself floating off into my own world. I started asking myself all these question like; what if this becomes my job? Do I have enough experience? Why would they choose me? And then something reminded me of my horrible grammar and my inability to write a proper sentence. All these thoughts started to make me doubt my abilities and when the conversation was done, I felt like kicking myself for agreeing. After a couple minutes went by I decided to look up what community broadcasting was, and what the responsibilities would be of a station program manager. I ended up finding out that community broadcasting also known as community radio is not that big of a deal in the broadcasting industry but the responsibilities of a station program manger included those listed below:
- Supervises two or more full-time employees, or their equivalent, on a regular basis.
- Makes decisions regarding hiring, evaluation, promotion and termination of employees, or makes related recommendations that are given particular weight.
- Establishes and approves materials broadcast on radio stations.
- Evaluates materials prior to broadcast for accuracy, quality and adherence to federal guidelines; maintains quality control of broadcast material.
- Monitors broadcast traffic and logging activities and makes improvements when necessary to enhance programming format.
- Schedules local and national programs, promotional material and public service announcements.
- Previews and screens local, regional, national and international program sources for possible station use and participates in purchase of programs.
- Participates in the development of station goals, policies and procedures.
The list went on and on but, after reading this (keeping in mind that this was just an example I had found of a job description) my stomach rolled. I was excited about everything else but the parts that mentioned that I was going to be responsible for evaluating materials, approving them and making sure that the materials are accurate. The scary part about this is that I realize that this includes being good at grammar and being able to point out the mistakes in pieces before they go out on the air, but I can’t even do this with my own work let alone someone else’s. I’m assuming that jobs like this require training that the employer provides but that training doesn’t include writing techniques. I’m hoping that by the time this job comes into my life, if it does, that I’ll have my grammar and writing curse broken.
I am happy to be given this great opportunity and hopefully it will open many doors for me, I have always been interested in radio just never thought the opportunity would come along to get some experience in it. I am excited to know that community radio is the voice of the people, and that it has become a part of my community. After receiving this news I have a great appreciation for this class. Honestly before this class I wasn’t so interested in journalism or broadcasting but now it seems like everything happens for a reason. I will definitely be taking more notes and practicing our in-class exercises more. I am interested in knowing more information about community broadcasting and the impact it has on the daily life’s of the communities people. Does your local community radio station appeal to you?