Tuning Into Life

Tuning Into Life

My College Radio Story

If someone would have told me a year ago that I would have real radio experience after starting college as a journalism major, I would have laughed out loud and went on my merry way. Yet here I sit, ready to start my second year of school, and I can't help but reflect on the past years of my life, and how they led to where I am now.

Radio is just one of those things there is no substitute for. Sure, we all have our phones with music streaming out our ears, but it's not radio, no matter how hard it tries to be. And for someone like myself who is low vision, radio was my TV, a place to see familiar personalities, a place to enjoy sports, radio dramas, and to listen to more music than should probably be legal.

I got my first boombox on my 9th birthday, and from then on, I was glued to it day and night, listening to country, talk radio, public radio and anything I could pick up, trying to learn about the world through dials and knobs, and even still, a bit beat up and dusty, that same boombox lives next to my bed, a broken tape player with AM FM radio still intact, and, the most important part of the whole set, the CD player, still clicking along. My first CDs were Allen Jackson and Carrie Underwood, artists I still love today. This was at a time where new CDs cost upwards of $20 apiece. For some, that may seem like I'm young, but now, that medium really doesn't exist anymore with streaming services being as prevalent as they are. And yes, before anyone else asks, I love and use Spotify just as much as anyone else, so yes, I'm guilty of my own crime.

But radio has and will hold a place in my heart. I had the chance to meet one of the personalities of a local station the other day, and it made me remember the days when morning shows were run by human beings rather than computers, I was even on the radio a few times growing up. And for me, it was amazing, because let's say you see someone from TV that you watch. They may look different than you expect them to, whereas when you meet someone from radio, they still have the same voice, you really can only change that so much. And with each voice comes a personality, someone you come to trust, and those people I listened to leap to the forefront of my mind as I write this.

So, my Freshman year of college, when the opportunity to take a radio prac class, a practical class in real radio, presented itself, I decided to do it, and it was easily the best decision I made my first year of college. I learned about more than just the class, got real experience, and learned a lot along the way.

As the semester progressed, so did my confidence in my ability to be an on-air personality, playing DJ on Saturday afternoons, as well as tailgating before football games with other members of our executive board. It is here that I learned about the true value of spirit, the fact that our football team did so well doesn't hurt one bit, as our mascot frequented our place in the parking lot. And of course, there was a running play by play broadcast live, so I knew the players well enough by the end of the season to understand stats and numbers, following our team until an unfortunate defeat in the playoffs that people still really don't want to talk about.

During second semester, things got rough for me. I went through some ups and some downs, but the two constant things were a best friend and a radio station. My show grew to something more, where I was able to host guests and talk about different aspects of campus life, and also, I had a show talking about books with a friend. Both went better than I could have hoped for, though both at the same time was a lot of work.

From football games and alternative tunes, to talking with friends and learning about how the field is played, radio has taught me much after just a year, and I hope it continues to do so this next year. I will be Assistant Promotions Director at 91.7 The Edge, and I encourage you to check it out. It's a great student run station that has made a difference in my life, and we appreciate those that listen. So, break away from the mainstream stations and try something new, just as I did, and give us a listen sometime!

Cover Image Credit: facebook

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Sorry Not Sorry, My Parents Paid For My Coachella Trip

No haters are going to bring me down.

With Coachella officially over, lives can go back to normal and we can all relive Beyonce’s performance online for years to come. Or, if you were like me and actually there, you can replay the experience in your mind for the rest of your life, holding dear to the memories of an epic weekend and a cultural experience like no other on the planet.

And I want to be clear about the Beyonce show: it really was that good.

But with any big event beloved by many, there will always be the haters on the other side. The #nochella’s, the haters of all things ‘Chella fashion. And let me just say this, the flower headbands aren’t cultural appropriation, they’re simply items of clothing used to express the stylistic tendency of a fashion-forward event.

Because yes, the music, and sure, the art, but so much of what Coachella is, really, is about the fashion and what you and your friends are wearing. It's supposed to be fun, not political! Anyway, back to the main point of this.

One of the biggest things people love to hate on about Coachella is the fact that many of the attendees have their tickets bought for them by their parents.

Sorry? It’s not my fault that my parents have enough money to buy their daughter and her friends the gift of going to one of the most amazing melting pots of all things weird and beautiful. It’s not my fault about your life, and it’s none of your business about mine.

All my life, I’ve dealt with people commenting on me, mostly liking, but there are always a few that seem upset about the way I live my life.

One time, I was riding my dolphin out in Turks and Cacaos, (“riding” is the act of holding onto their fin as they swim and you sort of glide next to them. It’s a beautiful, transformative experience between human and animal and I really think, when I looked in my dolphin’s eye, that we made a connection that will last forever) and someone I knew threw shade my way for getting to do it.

Don’t make me be the bad guy.

I felt shame for years after my 16th birthday, where my parents got me an Escalade. People at school made fun of me (especially after I drove into a ditch...oops!) and said I didn’t deserve the things I got in life.

I can think of a lot of people who probably don't deserve the things in life that they get, but you don't hear me hating on them (that's why we vote, people). Well, I’m sick of being made to feel guilty about the luxuries I’m given, because they’ve made me who I am, and I love me.

I’m a good person.

I’m not going to let the Coachella haters bring me down anymore. Did my parents buy my ticket and VIP housing? Yes. Am I sorry about that? Absolutely not.

Sorry, not sorry!

Cover Image Credit: Kaycie Allen

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Here's Why I Hate That I'm Enjoying The Sixers Playoff Series

I'm not too keen on Philadelphia sports, but I can't stop watching the 76ers.

This may be a dangerous and bold statement, being that I live in the Philly area, but I'll say it anyway. I can't stop following the Philadelphia 76ers, and I HATE it. I come from a family who supports New York sports and New York sports only, so I may have just become the family's biggest disappointment.

Philly sports go against everything I believe in. The fans are obnoxious, and New York is often a rival of them. When I went to school at West Chester University I was overwhelmed with all of the Philly fans, and was not very happy. During the past three years Villanova won two College Basketball Championships, and the Eagles won the Super Bowl (which they still haven't let us forget). So, I've been even more annoyed with this large fanbase than I already was.

Recently, however, the 76ers have really captivated me. I'm a huge College Basketball fan, but I've never been big into the NBA. I follow the bare-minimum because think it's overrated, so I've never had a team to obsess over. But, this year it has certainly changed.

The Sixers have really made their mark in the NBA this season. Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons have played incredibly, and posed a threat to every team. Their athleticism and intelligence while playing the game of basketball in unreal, which has, unfortunately completely lured me onto the Sixers bandwagon.

I've never been one to hop on the bandwagon, but I just can't help myself. The playoffs, which started on Saturday, April 14, really excited me, and I. Can't. Stand. It. They couldn't be stopped in game one, and dominated the Heat for most of the game, coming on top in the end. The second game, however did not play in the favor of the Sixers, but they still kept it close and made things interesting.

The rest of the series, and hopefully, the rest of the playoffs should be an exciting time for Philadelphia and their fans. I never thought these words would leave my mouth, but I can't wait to follow the Sixers on their playoff journey.

Cover Image Credit: NBA.com

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