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New Radio Station at GVSU Helping Students Gain Experience

Future broadcasters are taking advantage of the arrival of a new radio station on the Grand Valley State University campus.  WLXS 900 AM is giving students a real-life breakdown of the industry.

“We created the station because we wanted the students to get an experience that was much more in line with what they’re going to see in an actual radio station,” said Len O’Kelly, the associate director of GVSU’s School of Communication to WOOD-TV.

The station plays 80s and 90s music, and as a part of their coursework, students help run the station at least two hours per week. “That’s the hardest thing, coming up with stuff to say to keep the audience tuned in between songs,” student Jodie Miesen said. GVSU student Nicholas Matthews is known as “Diet Matthews” on the radio. He loves to show off his voiceover work. He has hopes of getting paid to talk for a living. He says the class is a great way to gain experience.

“This class is absolutely awesome,” Matthews said.

O’Kelly has more than 30 years of on-air experience. He says radio jobs are hard to find, but he hopes the new station can inspire his students. “It’s a tough field to get into,” O’Kelly said. “For those that persist, there are opportunities to get in.”