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Broadcasting Live from Aggieland

Broadcasting Live From Aggieland

By Craig Kilgore ’17 | Vol. 3 Issue 1



Music and college students go together like fall and football. Students walk to class, ride the bus, and even study with their headphones plugged into their phones or laptops listening to music. With all the different apps and online radio stations there are many ways students can listen to music, so here’s why you should tune into Aggieland’s first divergent rock radio station, Fusion FM. This student-run radio station is not only providing a beat to the daily lives of listeners, but also providing real broadcasting experience for students eager to make it their career.
Ever wondered what it’s like to run a radio station? With Fusion FM, it’s as simple as registering for class. Fusion FM is overseen by Dr. Billy McKim, who teaches two classes where students work in the radio station. In the Radio Broadcasting (AGCJ 366) class students do some production and on-air work following mid-terms. Students enrolled in the Advanced Radio Broadcasting (AGCJ 466) class do the majority of on-air (deejay), production, promotions, marketing, website, social media, music selection and scheduling for Fusion FM. These classes are not just limited to Agricultural Communication & Journalism majors though, students of any major are able to sign up. This program allows students to gain real world experience and deeper insight into what it takes to produce a functioning broadcasting program. Students gain knowledge and skills in many different areas that they would not learn otherwise. Fusion FM’s broadcast studio is located in the Agricultural & Life Sciences building on West Campus allowing students easy access. The Fall 2016 semester will likely offer a third broadcasting class (partnering with Bryan Broadcasting and TexAgs) that focuses on sports news. Radio Broadcasting students also have opportunities to attend the Country Radio Seminar in Nashville, TN; the National Association of Broadcasters Convention in Las Vegas, NV; the Texas Association of Broadcasters Convention in Austin, TX; as well as visit several stations in the Houston, Austin and San Antonio markets.
Radio Broadcasting students not only gain hands-on experience working in a radio station, but they are learning from Bryan Broadcasting’s industry professionals. Bryan Broadcasting hired Caitlin Curbello ’15 to act as a liaison between staff at their station and faculty and students at Fusion FM, facilitating technical support, regulation compliance and job shadowing opportunities. Curbello concepted the divergent rock program while in McKim’s introductory Radio Broadcasting class. Fusion FM was developed from a class project. Who knew that one class project would impact the campus in such a positive way? Curbello says, “The goal of Fusion FM is to provide an environment for students to acquire real-life, industry experience in several facets of broadcast media before they graduate. Fusion FM bridges the experiential gap between academia and industry. Fusion FM is a commercial radio frequency and completely student-run, with the exception of guidance provided by Bryan Broadcasting and Texas A&M faculty. From what I gather, this is one of the first university-corporate radio broadcasting partnerships of its kind.”
So when you are driving to campus, riding the bus, or need some good tunes while doing homework, listen to Fusion FM on 95.1-2 in HD or stream it online at radioaggielandcom. And if you want to learn what it takes to run a radio station, Texas A&M has a unique radio broadcasting program you won’t find anywhere else.
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