BY KENDALL BALCHAN
Photos courtesy of KCOD
“It is wonderful to be nationally recognized for our content at KCOD. We love working together creatively and collaboratively and receiving awards for content made with that spirit means the world to us.”
College of the Desert’s radio station, KCOD Coachella FM won three first place Golden Microphones and 14 other finalist trophies at the 78th Intercollegiate Broadcasting System’s national awards ceremony on March 3 in New York City.
The station won three first place awards including Best Program Promotion (Video/TV), Best Public Service Promotion, and Best Staff Newsletter and won 14 other finalist awards for competitive categories such as Best News Interview, Best Social Media Director, and Best Foreign Language Program.
KCOD award winner Toni Bakal said, “It is wonderful to be nationally recognized for our content at KCOD. We love working together creatively and collaboratively and receiving awards for content made with that spirit means the world to us.”
Representing our valley and the strength of community college radio broadcasting, KCOD was able to hold its own against some tough competition from universities across the country from Massachusetts to Washington and everywhere in between. “These awards represent the hard work of our students and the high standard of broadcasting excellence we have set here at COD,” KCOD Faculty Advisor Laurilie Jackson said. “KCOD and our entire media program gives students the skills they need to succeed and a voice across campus and throughout our community.”
The IBS conference wasn’t just about the awards ceremony, there were over 150 guest speakers representing decades of broadcasting talent, 100 sessions and tours and 1,600 attendees from all over the world. Students sat in on roundtables, learned how to start a podcast, gained tips for publicity, and attended panels on investigative news and ethics in broadcasting.
KCOD award winner, Abraham Cervantes said his favorite panel was “95.5 PLJ’s Race Taylor Talks Radio & Voice Overs” where he learned voiceover artists tips on breaking into the profession. Cervantes said, “I found it interesting the potential money you can make being a voiceover actor also the variety of commercial demographics that you could reach while doing voiceover acting.”
A total of 10 students and faculty attended the conference. Students also visited some popular tourist destinations including Ellis Island, the Empire State Building, 9/11 Memorial Museum, One World Observatory and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Everyone said they enjoyed the great food too.
In recent years there has been a significant uptick in interest among young people about a career in radio broadcasting. No longer a thing of the past, young people are steeped in the medium of radio and audio storytelling thanks in large part to podcasts like “Serial” and “This American Life.” Both of these shows promote tough conversations among listeners while other podcasts like “2 Dope Queens” with Phoebe Robinson and Jessica Williams or “Anna Faris is Unqualified” highlight the lighter and more casual conversations. There are even fictional podcasts like “Alice Isn’t Dead” that harken back to the age of radio dramas in the 1930s and take full advantage of production technology, musical scores and voice acting. Thanks to the internet anyone around the world can tune in to a radio station and listen to interesting original programming.
KCOD students and staff thank the COD Foundation and Board of Trustees for making this all happen.
You can listen to KCOD at 1450 AM, via the TuneIn Radio app on your smart phone and online at www.kcodcoachellafm.com, where you can also find their schedule of diverse offerings, which includes alternative music, hip-hop, classic rock, ‘80s, metal, Coachella and Stagecoach artists’ music, and local Coachella Valley acts. The station also interviews local and big-name bands.