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Training Days

Vicky Stanton's picture

7/28/2015 - Nine years ago, I first met my boyfriend and KVMR. He had just relocated here from Los Angeles, and I was still living down there.  Not the best timing for a relationship to start, but he commuted a couple of times a month, and I listened to KVMR online. He had just started the broadcaster training class at the time, and was excited about all he was learning and the possibility getting a show. And I well remember his anxiety about the certification process one has to go through in order to join KVMR’s broadcasting crew.

Fast forward to today: I have been living in Nevada City for two years, he has had his show for a long time, and I have just completed the broadcaster training class myself. Now I, too, am full of anxiety about the certification process!

The idea of being on the air had been percolating in me for some time, so I was delighted to be accepted into the 2015 class, the first in the fabulous new building. I wasn’t sure what to expect from the training process, so everything was new to me. There were about 35 of us, I think: people of all ages, backgrounds and interests. When we first met, we were all talking about the shows we were looking forward to hosting, paying scant attention to the need for someone to vacate a spot in the current broadcasting schedule before that could happen! With the projected second stream, however, and the likelihood of podcasting, we were assured there is a much better chance of having a show in one form or another than in earlier days.  

The training began with four weekly lasses hosted by veteran broadcasters Elisa Parker and Greg Jewett. Included were discussions on what makes for a good show and instruction on FCC requirements, i.e. what you HAVE to say and when,  and what you CANNOT say EVER. We also had guest appearances from accomplished broadcasters of music, news and talk show formats, along with key KVMR personnel. We learned the history of the station and were given insight into how big a part KVMR plays in the local community and even around the world. The theory was informative and helpful…but then there was the practical issue of going into the studio and being faced with a seemingly giant console. Suddenly it all seemed a little overwhelming. Looking at the dizzying array of sliders, blinking lights and mysterious buttons, I wondered if I was ever going to get the hang of it all. Not only does a broadcaster have to maneuver her way through all of this, she also has to follow a script of announcements to be made at specific times and keep a log of everything she plays and announces on air.  Multi-tasking abilities are crucial.  I have developed a new respect for broadcasters, since I have learned it is a lot more than simply going on mike, back-announcing a few songs and chatting about the weather! But now, after a number of shows done with my broadcaster mentor, the long-suffering and (mostly) patient boyfriend, I am think I am finally getting it and am scheduled for my on-air certification test in a few days. I am preparing like crazy, organizing and timing my music, practicing what to say and when to say it – and trying not to obsess about it!  Fingers are firmly crossed…


7/31/2015 - Midnight to 1:00 am on-air test on Red Eye Radio. Mission accomplished!!  Thanks a million to the boyfriend/mentor and to all the support from the KVMR trainers and evaluators!