First, there is the Tune Tracker, a new radio software that allows disc jockeys to schedule, stream and loop tracks so people can tune in to listen any time. Then there’s the Presonus Studiolive Mixer, a device that improves broadcast quality while limiting feedback and boosting processing capabilities. Then there’s, well, so many other new gadgets that one thing is clear: this is not your grandfather’s radio station.
Which is, of course, the point. This is Scot Radio, Gordon College’s student-run radio station—named after the college mascot—which first went live on the Internet during the fall of 2010. Now, thanks to a team effort led by club advisor Jonathan Gerber, assistant professor of psychology, the radio station has won an $8,000 grant from the Kendrick Foundation to upgrade and develop their station with such equipment as the Tune Tracker, the mixer and other necessary technology.
Two years ago, Gerber came on board as advisor of the radio club. Last year, he worked with student leaders Mac Gostow (of Santa Barbara, CA) and Naama Mendes (of Medford, MA) as well as Gordon development officer Fred DiStefano to write the grant proposal. They described their current and dated studio (near storage closets in Jenks Library) and researched specific software, turntables, microphones, mixers, computers, even an ON AIR Sign that allows hosts to know when to enter and exit the studio. Their combined work impressed the staff at the Kendrick Foundation, which provides gifts to organizations “that are focused on spreading the Gospel through radio and television media, and gives preference to those financially sound organizations that demonstrate the ability to reach a large radio or television audience, or audiences previously without access to programming.”
“We’ve already received the grant and should have most of the equipment in the next few weeks,” said Gerber, who is also a musician and a scholar of contemporary religious music. “The leaders at the Kendrick Foundation recognized the unique format and opportunity of Scot Radio in providing Christian college radio on the Internet, and I think our collaboration (between students, faculty and staff) made the difference.”
Over 20 students have participated in running Scot Radio, which airs Mondays through Thursdays. Show hosts offer various music programs and cover campus and world news, sports, religious discussions and faculty interviews. The station can be accessed through http://blogs.gordon.edu/scotradio/
The grant also covers membership with the Intercollegiate Broadcast System, a radio network that assists colleges in technical support and direction offering experienced and professional assistance to promote best practices. And a student club member is designing an iPhone app for Scot Radio as well.
“The grant covers enough that the club can move to a more streamlined format while improving its sound,” said Gerber. “This is a great way for students to gain confidence and experience on all levels by running a more technologically advanced station themselves.”