RadioUTD is ecstatic to be a part of World College Radio Day! To celebrate this holiday with us, enjoy the experiences of our DJ’s that truly exemplify what it means to be a part of college radio!
Are you a music enthusiast? Attending a college? That hosts their own radio station? If you check all three boxes, you most emphatically should get involved in that station right now. I’ve been part of Radio UTD for a whole month, and it’s been a wonderful exposure to the more professional side of the music industry. Not that I’m getting paid, mind you, but, if you’re serious about the music industry, being forced to prepare mixes on a weekly or bi-weekly basis and fit in the appropriate amount of new music and voiceovers, all while keeping your signature quality, original content, are exercises that will shape you for the better. Radio UTD is one of the most – if not the most – mature, professional, and respectful communities on campus, yet it’s comprised of students who are genuinely passionate about music and, more than that, sharing the gift of great music with others. If you care so deeply about some genres, artists, and songs that you want people everywhere to hear them, college radio just may be the perfect place to further pursue these interests.
-George Goodman, Trainee
College radio has been a part of my life for all of my life since my parents were both students when I was born. Many of my first memories involve riding in the car with them and listening to what their campus’s radio station had to offer. Fast forward to my own college years, though I didn’t get the chance to be a DJ or work at a station when I was in undergrad, I remember tuning in regularly to hear songs that I wouldn’t hear on any other station. Thanks to these terrestrial stations (on the other side of the dial) and eventually stations that stream online, I was introduced to some of my favorite performers and groups that I wouldn’t have been introduced to otherwise (this is before Myspace, YouTube, and other sites became a big deal and regularly featured up-and-coming acts and indie artists). Now that I actually get to work at a college radio station, one of my favorite things about it is having the opportunity to share my love for all kinds of music with others and getting to enjoy what others share with me. Music has always been a part of my life, and Radio UTD gives me the chance to be involved with one of the things I love most even though I’m not majoring in communications or anything RTF-related.
-Alana King, Host of something old/something new
In an era where commercial airwaves have been homogenized to death in the name of major label profits, alternative media outlets are more crucial than ever. College radio collaborates with independent artists, labels, and promoters to cultivate an ecosystem for voices left out of the mainstream. Where else but college radio can you hear latinx hip-hop, queer punk-rock, and New Orleans jazz in the same evening?
Something I deeply admire about Radio UTD is how it reflects both the university and the
individual students who make it what it is. The eclectic themes of each program, from politics and cuisine to storytelling and pop-culture, illustrate the intellectual curiosity and creativity that has driven our school’s success in all kinds of fields.
On a more micro-scale, when I listen to a DJ’s show, I feel like I’ve been granted a small peek into that person’s essence. Their show is a labor of love, each song or speaking segment an insight into what that person values in the world. The privilege to speak on-air about the culture I’m passionate about is one I don’t take for
-Daniel Valdez, Host of Stay Tooned
Hosting a program at UT Dallas’s radio station was not something I thought I’d ever do. In fact, if I’m being honest, before applying for a show I had completely bought into the “commuter school” mindset that many fall into at UTD: drive to school, fight for parking, put on my headphones, go to class, and go home. Rinse and repeat for over two years. Music wasn’t my specialty – sure I had some playlists and yes I listened to FM radio, but I was not the type who could’ve hosted a show revolving around music. Instead I searched for whatever sports talk podcast I hadn’t listened to yet – at work, between classes, on the road. It didn’t matter where or when, I was always hearing analysis and predictions and commentary over whatever league was in season at the time. And despite being a business major, deep down I knew I could do sports talk – not just among friends, but in a professional, recorded setting where what I said mattered and others were anonymously listening in. But where was that at UTD, a school that doesn’t even have a football team? I didn’t think it was a possibility until a friend overheard my rants about why the Cowboy’s offense was struggling and suggested I look into hosting a show on RadioUTD. I was asking myself, “Isn’t college radio just about music?”. Despite my reservations, I applied to host a sports talk show with some friends, and since then my entire idea of not just college radio, but college itself, has changed.
Given the typical focus on music when it comes to college radio, I was surprised at how quickly our show was approved and how excited the management was for us to go on air. I expected them to be hesitant given how little I knew about college radio and having zero idea of up-and-coming musicians. Instead we were welcomed with opened arms and encouraged to become a part of the family that is RadioUTD. Over the last year, I ended up meeting many new people, going to lots of events that I would’ve missed had I been just a “commuter”, and I’ve even broadened my musical horizons.
Despite all the events I’ve attended, all the music I’ve discovered, and all the friends I’ve made since joining RadioUTD, the one moment that stands out among many would be when my co-hosts and I rolled into the station early Friday morning as we always do and found a little note left in the studio – “Agam, Chase, and Blake – good luck on your show today!”. It was a simple, anonymous note, yet after staying up late watching the Thursday night football game while also trying to study and get homework done and prep for our two hour slot, it was the exact kindness and support that gave us the boost to have one of our best episodes yet. Weeks later I’m still not sure who left the note, but in a way it doesn’t matter who wrote it, just that someone was willing to. Widening my music tastes has been awesome, and hosting a sports talk show has fulfilled a dream I never thought I’d be able to do. But by far the most significant impact RadioUTD has had on me comes from the people I’ve met and become friends with that otherwise I would’ve never known.
-Blake Malone, Host of BAC2BAC