The Radio Department offers a program that provides each student with a comprehensive overview of the art and business of radio broadcasting while developing in-depth knowledge and skills in on-air talent and show hosting, production, programming, and producing for commercial and public radio formats including HD and satellite radio, podcasting, and webcasting.
All of our full-time faculty work in the radio industry—some you will hear weekly on Chicago radio stations, while others provide consulting and meet regularly with general managers in marketing, sales, and promotions. Our adjunct faculty members are production directors, news reporters, anchors, music and talk show hosts, morning show producers, and sportscasters in both commercial and public radio.
Our philosophy is that succeeding in the radio industry demands more than raw talent. That talent needs to be nurtured. Students are encouraged to find their own creative route to success with the guidance that helps them determine what they really want, while gaining exposure to the whole range of opportunities in the world of radio. This is bolstered by a firm foundation in the day-to-day business of radio that gives them the knowledge—indeed, the confidence—to navigate the competitive landscape. We want our students to have experiences that will set them apart as leaders and innovators. Thus, our students learn contemporary broadcast format in a structured studio setting, then are encouraged to put their stamp on it: they create their own show for the College radio station or write and produce an original radio skit or play and then hear it live on the air. Students may also devise an innovative sales plan prepared first in a classroom and then present it at a meeting in a Chicago radio station to members of the sales staff. All of these ambitious projects are completed with faculty and student support. This is the time to take a risk, to try something new. Many Radio students learn both the business and creative sides of radio—they take a sales internship one semester and work with a production director the next. We know that having exposure to the many facets of radio will give them the edge in the job hunt. More than ever, radio is a dynamic industry that seeks creative minds with the ability to keep up with the changing technology and business practices in a highly competitive world.
Our program is built on the conviction that if you really want to do something, you can. Ours is a rigorous program, one that requires hours outside of class preparing and practicing, one that requires the kind of commitment and passion that makes getting up at 3:00am to host a morning show a joy—and not simply a job. And we believe broadcasting is a responsibility: ethics and civic engagement are vital parts of the curriculum. Our students write and produce public service announcements for local nonprofit organizations and each year host a College-wide fundraising drive for charity.
Our goal is that all students have an opportunity to be the very best they can be, find and realize their dreams, and ultimately contribute to their community and the world.