Life in Radio: From ‘Amazing’ to ‘Awesome’
LiAnna Overman took a turn in the high-backed interviewer’s chair today. Until now, when guests (athletes) came to be interviewed, we had other guests (professional journalists) there to ask questions.
Today we had only one guest, Jason Samuel, the general manager of 91.1 the Globe, which was named the best college radio station in the nation earlier in the year. With a notebook in hand, LiAnna agreed to serve as the opening interviewer.
Her first question: How did you get started in radio? Samuel told about traveling across Philadelphia with his mother to visit Q102 as a fifth grader. David Dye, the longtime host of World Cafe, was on the air that day. “It was amazing,” Samuel said.
Another question prompted Samuel to talk about how setbacks can become motivators, whether in school or in careers. “I had a professor in college,” he said, ” who told me that with my Philadelphia accent I should go into broadcasting management because I would never get a job on the air. That inspired me.”
“Losing is part of life, but I like winning best,” he said.
Determined to succeed as a broadcaster, Samuel worked for WFRN-FM in Elkhart, Regional Radio Sports Network in Crown Point and Hoosier 103.5 in Syracuse.
In 1998 and 2001, he was named Indiana Sportscaster of the Year, and in 1998 Best Sports Play-by-Play announcer.
Before the interview, Samuel gave students a tour of the radio station on the campus of Goshen College. Students had a chance to hear one of their own on the air. Days earlier Julia Giddens had recorded a promotional spot for the Kids Try-Athlon in Goshen. A staff member played the spot in the studio (not live, since the Try-Athlon took place a week ago).
Other Write on Sports campers had a chance to ask questions as well, including: what is it like to manage a college radio station? “I get to do two things that are awesome: work on radio and work with students,” he said.