Florida Southern students to launch radio station

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Photo by Jillian Kurtz -- Professor Tim Register oversees students working on preparation towards the radio station’s official launch which is planned for January.

Grayson Skweres

The communication department at Florida Southern College is launching a radio station called The Hiss.  The station has been given the go-ahead to begin work and presents an opportunity for students to learn the intricacies of a radio broadcast, from hosting to producing and engineering.  

The Hiss will be an online broadcast and will not be able to be found on AM or FM radio. According to the radio staff, the stream could be available on speakers around campus as early as the spring semester.

Graphic by Jesse Quales —
The logo for “The Hiss,” set to be launched in January.

“I got the idea to start the online broadcast over the summer,” visiting professor of communication Tim Register said.  “I thought it would be great to do it and I wondered why we hadn’t yet.”

Florida Southern originally tried to launch a student-led radio station in the 90s, but it was expensive, cumbersome and ahead of the times, according to Register.

Work began on starting the station at the beginning of the fall semester and it received approval from the dean and the provost. Uploaded music and pre-recorded shows will be heavily featured to start, but the station hopes to quickly progress towards live broadcasts.

“There is no exact time table,” Register said. “We are beta launching now.  We’re hoping to publicly launch the first part of [2020]. We are still nailing down what type of programming we will have, but we will  have diverse music options, talk, sports coverage, news coverage and weather.”

The station is open to students from all majors, not just those within the communication department.  Current podcasts originating from Florida Southern will have a new home on the radio station once it is officially launched to the public.

“We’re looking to include the entire campus.  People from all parts of the school can participate with the programming,” Register said.

The current equipment is older and has been altered to be used for digital broadcasts, as Register found a lot of the equipment in closets at the school.  “Most of what is here is 20-years-old,” Register said.  

If The Hiss is a success, they hope that the school will invest more money in the project.

Lexi Potter will be the station’s programming director.  Her job includes managing the members of the station and setting the station programming schedule.

“I feel like we have a lot of good stuff planned,” Potter said. “I’m also in SGA and I brought it up at the last meeting and they were all very excited.” 

Editors’ Note: several of the Southern’s writers will be staffing The Hiss. 

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