The time has finally come. My time at Lexington Community Radio is ending, and I have thoroughly enjoyed interning there not only this semester but last semester as well. The past several months has been full of powerful learning experiences, including moments in which I have assisted with community outreach. To begin, Lexington Community Radio is a Low Power FM radio station that is the home to 95.7FM El Pulso Latino and WLXU 93.9FM that is located in the STEAM Academy; their goal is to empower community voices as well as support projects and organizations that focus on bettering the lives within the community. 95.7FM El Pulso Latino consists of Spanish programming and shows that are hosted by Latino community members. A main goal of El Pulso is to provide news, education, music, art, culture, and so much to the Lexington community. El Pulso is incredibly important because it provides significant and noteworthy information to the Latino community in Spanish. For many members of the Latino community, it is very important that they have resources available to them in Spanish, which is why El Pulso is so amazing.
Serving as an intern at Lexington Community Radio this semester has been a wonderful opportunity. I have had the chance to connect with local business and sponsors for marketing and outreach opportunities on behalf of LCR. Furthermore, I have represented the station at publicity events, like Night Market with staff members. From delivering informative flyers about LCR to representing LCR in the community, it has been a fun and rewarding experience interacting with the Lexington community while simultaneously serving Lexington Community Radio. In addition, I have also obtained vital skills that will assist me in the future; for example, this semester I have become proficient in using Audacity program by editing 95.7FM El Pulso Latino show and sharing via SoundCloud. Over the course of this school year, I have improved translation skills by communicating with Spanish-speakers at the station and off-site events, creating PSAs in Spanish, and listening to podcasts of El Pulso 95.7 shows. Not only that, I have also recorded PSAs in English; I have recorded PSAs in English about the station itself as well as PSAs in both languages about events at the Lexington Theater. Additionally, I have occasionally managed LCR’s Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook accounts in order to keep the public updated about changes within the station as well as important news and events.
Being able to practice Spanish has really boosted my confidence, which is something that I have really been trying to do; I am still a bit shy when it comes to speaking Spanish, but I have really noticed some improvement in my Spanish skills—even if it might not be as noticeable to others. Everyday a variety of people walk into LCR, and I quickly realized how I would have to be flexible. Some of the people who come in to record shows work at local businesses, such as Lyric Theater and Kentucky Refugee Ministries; others are just everyday citizens. I had to adapt to every situation and learn how to interact with those who came in. I quickly learned that some people I could be very casual with, but with other people I recognized that it was more important to act more professionally. With that in mind, I sent several emails to DJs because it was my responsibility to upload their podcasts to LCR’s SoundCloud, which is something that my supervisor can attest to. I utilized the email etiquette that I have learned in college, especially in classes like Business Writing. Because I had never met these individuals and was acting on behalf of the station, I had to act very professional. Not to mention, I had to be very personable and professional when I delivered flyers to local businesses and organizations in Lexington.
After interning at LCR this school year, I got the chance to obtain an inside look at how they are serving the community. I strongly believe that LCR is fulfilling its goal to “empower the community by engaging listeners with local, timely, and relevant information and opinion that positively impact safety and quality of life in Lexington” (Lexington Community Radio). They are very involved within the Lexington community and are always trying to create new ideas about how they—and other organizations—can help the community. LCR is very passionate about keeping the Lexington updated, providing intriguing and unique shows, and including diverse individuals; as someone who has attended events (co)-hosted by LCR and spent hours at the station, I can attest that are achieving just that.
One of LCR’s greatest strengths is that include such fascinating and diverse DJs on the air. Whenever I am at the station, I interact with diverse individuals from the community. It is exciting to hear their stories and listen to their fascinating shows. Another strength is that they are very active within the community and finding ways to help Lexington’s citizens. They provide very important information about health, education, community events, and more on their stations for listeners, which is critical for people who really need these resources as well as all of Lexington’s citizens. Also, I think it is amazing that LCR is so active within the community. They host and co-sponsor great programs and events that help Lexington’s people as well as invite amazing people to be a part of shows, PSAs, ads, and more.
As I wrap up my time at the station, I am amazed by how this internship has shaped my academic career as well as prepared me for what is ahead post-graduation. If I could change anything at all about my experience, it would be that I could be more involved outside the station; I got to represent LCR at Night Market at October, and I really enjoyed being able to directly interact with the community and promote LCR. I expected to learn about what goes on behind the scenes at a radio station. For example, I learned that and more about what it takes to make a radio station operate efficiently. In the past, I never had experience with radio programming at all, which is why this internship has been so valuable. I learned how to edit podcasts, enhanced my Spanish skills, and improved my overall communication skills by interacting with diverse groups of people. And just like that my time at Lexington Community Radio this semester has ended; it has been a pleasure interning at this wonderful organization for the entire 2016-17 school year.