2018-04-21 / The Bullhorn

RCS graduate to manage radio station at ASU

BY SARA COATES
BULLHORN REPORTER


RCS 2015 alumna Maggie Harper RCS 2015 alumna Maggie Harper Maggie Harper, a 2015 graduate of Roxboro Community School, has been promoted to station manager of 90.5 WASU for the 2018-2019 school year at Appalachian State University (ASU).

Harper has been at ASU since the fall of 2015, with plans of graduating in May of 2019.

“Boone is the best place in the world,” Harper said. “I could live in the mountains all my life. Appalachian State feels like home. The people are ridiculously nice and I have made a lot of great friends here.”

In high school, Harper began to build many relationships that led to her love for all types of journalism, including her decision to major in electronic media and broadcasting, with a minor in commercial photography at ASU.

“I got my start in [Phyliss] Boatwright’s journalism class. I never would have even thought about radio if Boatwright hadn’t introduced me to David Bradsher Sr.,” Harper continued, “love that woman.”

Harper believes she owes much of her success to recording the RCS morning announcements while in high school.

“Not to brag, but Hannah Lunsford and I were pretty much bona-fide stars,” she said.

Harper went on to discuss her work experience in Roxboro at 96.7 WKRX with Bradsher “and the great people at his station.”

“Mr. Bradsher gave me my first ever job in radio at 15, reading church news and obituaries.”

“That’s not very glamorous, but I was thankful for the opportunity. I put the time in and learned as much as I could about radio and practiced my on-air skills,” she said.

Outside of high school, Harper became news director of 90.5 WASU during her junior year at ASU, a position she applied for during her sophomore year.

In that position, “I wrote, recorded, and edited newsbreaks that played on-air and were shared on social media,” said Harper.

In her new position as station manager, Harper has a staff of approximately 15 positions under her, including music director, program director, and promotions director.

Harper will have to lead weekly staff meetings, monthly station meetings, and keep up with her staff members. She will also help DJs who have hourly shifts each week, which she says totals approximately 60 people, all while she hosts her own DJ show as well.

Harper is also expected to write reports, sit in on meetings around campus, and assign projects.

When the time arose to apply for the position, Harper mixed up the due dates and turned in the wrong application on the wrong day.

“Somehow it all came together and I was allowed to actually apply and interview,” she said.

Harper was then interviewed on Friday, March 23, by a panel of about 15 people from different departments at ASU, which she said is how all college jobs are obtained.

“The interview was stressful, but again, I knew what I wanted and I went in there confident,” she continued, “I even told a joke, and it killed, don’t worry.”

Harper heard back on Monday, March 26, and has already begun to work on some things for next year.

“This week, I also had to interview and hire WASU staff with my boss, Dan Vallie, for the 2018-2019 year,” she said.

Overall, Harper expressed that she is “so happy!”

“I have always wanted this position,” said Harper, “From the very first time I toured 90.5 WASU, I knew that I wanted to go far there. Did I think I could necessarily achieve that goal? I don’t know about that, but I went for it and I got it. I put in the time for something I wanted and thankfully, I got it. I have loved working at the station and growing. I have really learned so much about radio and journalism at Appalachian State.”

The position is “almost validating” to Harper, who believes it is evidence that she can actually succeed.

“People do believe in me,” Harper said, “I just have to. And I really do now.”

At the end of the day, “I will try my hardest to make WASU the best college radio station in the nation,” concluded Harper.

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