A Lewis and Clark student helps Marquette students record a podcast.GODFREY/ALTON - Marquette Catholic High School (MCHS) communications students spent an afternoon on air with the radio program at Lewis and Clark Community College (LCCC).

On Thursday, Oct. 12, 2023, students worked with LCCC radio coordinators David Ollenbittle and Mike Lemons in the new radio suite on LCCC’s Godfrey campus. They recorded a podcast and went live on the LCCC radio station, WLCA FM 89.9.

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“It’s a very nice experience to bring them in, show them that we do have a lot of exciting options here at Lewis and Clark,” said Randy Gallaher, Dean of Liberal Arts, Business and Information Technology at LCCC. “They get to experience it and they get to themselves go on air, and it’s just kind of a neat experience for them.”

MCHS has a radio station on the Marquette campus, which is managed by the high school’s radio class. The students travel to LCCC once a year to check out the college radio station and learn about opportunities in media and communications.

LCCC students and faculty were especially excited to welcome MCHS this year so they could show off their new radio suite, including an air studio and two production rooms with a full recording setup for video and radio. Lemons, professor and WLCA station manager, explained that LCCC has expanded their radio program since the rise of streaming and the COVID-19 Pandemic. Students still operate the radio station, but they also produce videos, podcasts and other forms of content to share with WLCA listeners.

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David Ollenbittle talks about radio production.A few of these students were present to work with the high schoolers. The MCHS class broke into three groups to record a podcast, complete production tasks and go live on air. Students agreed they were excited but a little nervous about being on air.

“I can talk to a roomful of people but I can’t talk in front of a camera,” student Meredith Zigrang joked.

Zigrang is thinking about pursuing a career in broadcasting to work as a sports announcer. Whether the MCHS students are interested in pursuing media after high school or they’re just taking the radio class out of curiosity, they agreed it has been a fun semester so far.

“We’re also on the radio all the time, so during seventh and eighth period, we go up to our radio room at Marquette and we get to sit on the radio. It’s pretty awesome,” Ren Valentine said. “I’m excited to be on the radio. I’m excited to be in a new environment with new tech and stuff like that, and I’m excited to learn and figure it out.”

Who knows? Some of the MCHS students who toured the radio suite might be on air on WLCA next year, broadcasting to the Riverbend region.

Mike Lemons prepares students to go live on air.

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