April 27, 2023, by ahyeo2
How University Radio Nottingham Enhanced my CV
By Emily Oxbury, MA History student blogger
Here at the University of Nottingham we have an array of fantastic media groups. NSTV, Impact, Nottingham New Theatre and University Radio Nottingham (URN) make up the Student Run Services (SRS) within the SU.
After stumbling across their stand at the society’s fair over three years ago, I decided to join URN. It was one of the best decisions of my University career. From broadcasting a 24 hour live show to fundraise for Comic Relief to commentating on the Varsity Ice Hockey I’ve been afforded an array of career enhancing opportunities. Here are just a few examples of what I’ve learnt and the skills I’ve gained whilst being at the station.
Presenting and planning
Hosting a weekly live show requires a great deal of preparation. Planning appropriate music, fun features and spoken content are all key skills any media presenter must have. Whether planning a radio show like me, or creating any form of media for the public’s consumption, here are a few key questions to consider:
- Who is your audience? If you’re trying to appeal to a specific demographic, certain music genres and topics of conversation will be more appropriate than others.
- What time is your show? If the media is going out late at night, upbeat party music may be what you choose as the background, if it’s early morning you may want to opt for more calming music.
- What will engage your viewers/listeners? Having weekly recurring features – from battle of the songs to asking for agony aunt style answers to problems
I have had the opportunity to conduct and record a number of interviews. From talking to senior university staff about the pandemic’s effect on students, to interviewing music artists after local gigs, I’ve learnt a lot about what makes a good interview.
Do ask more questions than you think you’ll need for the feature. It’s easier to cut an interview down than try to rearrange a second interview to fill in missing gaps!
Don’t ask questions which lead to a simple yes / no answer. Try to ask for opinions and thoughts on events.
Do research the person you’re interviewing. For example, if it’s a music artist, find out about their recent releases, tours and musical influences.
Don’t launch straight into the interview. Try to have a quick chat with your interviewee first to introduce yourself and put them at ease.
Do try to ask new and exciting questions. If you’re interviewing multiple people about the same topic or event, try to vary the questions you ask. If appropriate, games or interactive segments can make for an engaging interview.
Events planning and online presence
From socials to DJ events, URN is not just about what’s happening on air. The off-air activities are just as important. Social media and events help to make the station a well-rounded brand.
When posting on social media the main goal should be to create an engaged audience. Be sure to have a regular schedule you follow as this maintains interaction with your followers. Following viral trends on YouTube and TikTok can also help to elevate your brand to connect with a wider audience. Instagram stories with polls and question boxes can be a great way to get audience opinion and input, especially during a live show.
When planning in-person events to connect with your online audience, ensure your branding is consistent for all the publicity. Consider venues which are representative of your media group’s main messages.
Find out more about a pursuing a career in Film, TV, Media and Communications.
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