Interns at radio stations act as assistants to whomever may need them that day. In larger stations, interns may work in a specific department, such as production, promotions or sales, while those in smaller stations may work with others in any occupation, including directors, managers and radio hosts. An intern's primary responsibility depends on the station's size and focus.
Show Your Interest
Interning at a radio station takes creativity, focus and excellent communication skills, whether you're writing on-air scripts or fielding incoming calls. Many companies prefer students who are currently enrolled in college, but large organizations like National Public Radio may have broader criteria for eligibility. Ideal candidates are currently working towards a degree in a field related to broadcasting, such as communications or journalism. Students in similar majors, like public relations and marketing, are also encouraged to apply.
Participate in Planning
Interns typically play a part in planning phases for different events, from researching potential stories to hanging banners for upcoming promotions. For example, interns at Boston's NPR news station, WBUR, mainly research topics for radio hosts and prepare guests to come on the show. Others, like those at Entercom Buffalo, attend station events, where they handle the box of giveaways for listeners who win contests that are held randomly throughout the day.
Engage the Audience
Radio stations thrive by attracting and engaging listeners, which requires interacting with the crowds at events and promotions. Z100 in New York, for instance, has promotions and marketing interns converse with listeners at events, while interns at WJOX-FM in Alabama are required to socialize with listeners over the Internet. They may share funny pictures on Facebook or Twitter, and ask how readers feel about the station to get them thinking about the station throughout the day.
Fill Other Roles
An intern may be asked to fulfill additional requests that may vary by his major or the needs of the station. For example, those at KSDS-FM in San Diego City College are responsible for sending promotional mail and filing forms for memberships and payments. Interns may assist guests who are in the studio, waiting to go on-air, while others may be responsible for posting updates on the station's website and sharing interviews as podcasts.