Tag Archives: Internship

End of Internship Report: Clara at 1650 The Fan

Time flies. These past two and a half months have gone by so fast. It seems like it was only yesterday that I received my first email from my new supervisor Bob Foster, director of 1650 The Fan, radio station at Cedar Valley Broadcasting, asking me if I could start my internship a few weeks early. Since then, I have been involved in (and in most cases, in charge of) the pre-production, production and post production of four videos. While four videos may not seem like a lot, each phase actually took about one week, meaning an average of three weeks per video.

You can see these videos and what else I’ve done through this internship on 1650 The Fan’s YouTube channel and on my web based portfolio.

During my internship, I learned many things. One thing that I learned fairly quickly is that radio isn’t dying. It is a common misconception that “No one listens to the radio” and I have to admit that I had this misconception before my internship. It is true that it’s not growing quickly, however there is still a loyal audience. Over the summer I saw active listeners of Bob Foster’s morning show “Foster on the Fan” recognize him with comments such as “I listen to you every morning man!”

Today’s loyal radio audience listens, “In their car on their way to work,” says Foster. Radio has shifted from being used by families in the home to a form of entertainment and/or information gathering tool in the car.

Clara Internship
Bob Foster greeting fans of his morning show at Sturgis Falls.

Being selfish is human nature. We all think at some point in our lives that the world revolves around us. A good way to catch someone’s attention when it comes to advertising is to personalize what you are saying. Most commercials are only about the company and service, but the real trick is to make it about them instead of you, then your audience will be even more interested. What can your product or service do for them? How can it benefit them? That is what potential clients really care about. Even simply using the word “you” or giving an implied order such as “get maximum sports” makes the listener feel more active and interested in what you have to tell them.

Plan ahead: Pre-production is important. That is something that of course as a digital media double major I already knew, but was greatly highlighted during my internship. My most challenging shoot was my first one, mostly from lack of planning and pre-production. For almost all my shoots, we had about a week of pre-production in which we went location scouting, created a storyboard, and discussed what the client (Cedar Valley Broadcasting) wanted and needed from each project. It’s not always about the what and how: the why is the most important. Why was I creating these videos?

I hadn’t realized before how much location scouting is very important and helpful. It’s even better if it can be done at least one day before the shoot, which gives you time to envision some of the shots. If you cannot go to the location prior to the shoot, ask for layout of the place from someone who has already been there. For my first shoot of the ISU Tailgate Tour, I asked Foster for a layout of the location and he drew me a map which was very helpful, especially considering I didn’t even know this was an inside shoot until the day before!


Clara Internship  Clara Internship

Bob Foster and I creating the storyboard for the Cedar Valley Broadcasting Promotion video.

Always have a plan B! If there’s anything my supervisor Bob Foster wanted me to leave having learned, it’s “always have a plan B!” This important tip within the media field has been told to me since day one. What if your tripod doesn’t work? What if your camera runs out of battery? Both of these things actually happened to me on the ISU Waterloo Tailgate Tour shoot. Luckily I had a plan B. For the tripod, I ended up using a tall table and stacked my camera in a stable position on top of its bag for the interviews. The rest were handheld shots. For the battery, I had brought an extra battery, and a battery charger, so I managed to find a plug and alternate between batteries. At our Sturgis Falls shoot, we had difficulties picking up the mic line audio. Our solution? Simply use plan B. This was a two-camera shoot, so we switched cameras and used the second camera to pick up the audio. Foster has also taught me that you can never be too safe and it is always a smart move to go even beyond and have a plan C, D and even E ready. Just in case.

 -Clara Tosi

End of Internship Report: Piper at NRG Media

As the summer is coming to a close, it is interesting to look back on all of my experiences and things I have learned from my internship at NRG Media in Waterloo, Iowa. I have learned everything from community engagement at events to imaging and producing promotions to be aired on the stations.

I would have to say the most important thing I learned about working at a media company is to go with the flow. The creative process is a messy one, and it takes multiple people, each working on their own tasks, to make promotions happen. A good media company, in my opinion, has a very laid back environment in which ideas can flourish, and NRG Media is a prime example of that.

Piper Internship

Having spent a lot of time outdoors with The Party Summer Concert Tour registering people for a chance to win tickets to see various artist, I learned some important lessons and tips.

  1. Sunscreen and water are always a good idea
  2. Rejection is something you get used to
  3. It’s not about what you are trying sell or promote, it’s how you act and present yourself to others

In addition to working with the stations on remote events, I also got to try my hand at the production side of the business. The most important lesson here is to always listen and trust your first instinct. The more you overthink, the worse it will be.

I feel like that goes for most media companies. The more something is analyzed over and over again to reach perfection, the more it slips in the other direction towards destruction.

Before I did this internship, I knew very little about how the radio business worked, but after interning with NRG Media I have a newfound appreciation for all the work that everyone does, not just the radio DJs. Above all, this internship has opened up a new world of possibilities and interests for me to pursue in the future.

-Piper Davis

End of Internship Report: Sam at Cumulus Media

Now that my internship has come to an end, I’ve been able to reflect and think back on all the things I’ve learned at Cumulus Media in Des Moines, Iowa.

I think the most valuable thing I learned was what it was like to work in a serious, professional environment. I’ve had jobs before and interned before as well, but I’ve never worked for a large, national company like Cumulus media. To me, it felt like I really was an adult with a real adult job.

That may sound silly, but I think this is a very important idea. Our experience of the workforce is very different as an adult than as a teenager. It was intimidating to think of what I may have to do once I graduated, as I didn’t feel that I had much to compare it too. Now I feel more comfortable with the idea of graduating and getting a job in my field. It feels like I know what to expect, and that is because I got to work in an environment that was in my field.

Sam InternshipAnother valuable experience I had was in gaining more media production skills. While I was very capable of doing audio work already, I was able to learn more skills and tricks to make production easier. I worked closely with their production people and they helped me a lot.

I had the chance to learn the ins and outs of the radio industry too. There are a lot of secrets I learned, but I obviously can’t spoil them because they are secrets. I can say that I thoroughly understand what “Traffic” means in the radio world. Traffic is basically everything that gets aired on the radio. They have a Traffic department that checks and sorts and decides when and where everything on the radio is broadcast. Working in Traffic takes an incredible amount of skill.

Sales is another area I learned quite a bit about. I think most people do not realize how important sales is in radio. Many people may just think of radio as music, but it really is more like an advertisement company with music sprinkled in. I got to watch and learn how the sales orders were processed and the way Cumulus creates a commercial from beginning to end.

If I had to impart any advice to anyone wanting to work for a media company, it would be to show up on time and listen. In my opinion, those are the biggest things Cumulus wanted. They wanted people who would show up when they were told and were willing to listen when given instructions. It sounds very basic, yet I think those are the best pieces of advice I can give.

-Sam King

End of Internship Report: Tom at NRG Media

Over the course of this summer I learned a vast amount of information and had many different experiences at NRG Media in Waterloo, Iowa. I was able to take advantage of many beyond-the-classroom opportunities and dive head first into the radio sector of the media industry and I am very grateful to the NRG staff.

I learned many lessons over the summer, and the first was about the radio broadcast industry itself. Before this summer I had a misconception of radio being far more one-dimensional than it really is. I discovered that every member of the NRG Media team needs to do so much on so many different levels of operations for the business to stay fresh and interesting.

Tom InternshipI saw an impressive number of avenues through which NRG was connecting with consumers and advertisers, at local and even international levels, through various digital and physical media. I took part in NRG connecting with audiences by utilizing facebook live, doing weekly podcasts, streaming and connecting internationally through station apps, putting up banners, driving around local communities, doing remotes, and connecting through phone. The way in which NRG is openly and eagerly embracing new ways for their business to connect on all levels is an exciting dynamic to be a part of.

I saw the way NRG Media operates in the digital media industry through adaptability and innovation in their regular business operations. I regularly saw the different stations at the Waterloo location of NRG not only discuss ideas and progress on a weekly basis, but I was also able to take part in many of those projects as well. Though I have discussed aspects of the digital media industry in a classroom setting, it was an incredible experience to see these ideas discussed in a professional setting.

I’m thankful for the opportunities I was able to pursue this summer at NRG Media, and I am excited to see the ways in which I will be able to take the industry knowledge into my professional life!

-Tom Randolph

Piper’s Summer Internship Report

I just started my Digital Media Leadership Internship at NRG Media in Waterloo a few weeks ago, and I am one of three UNI Digital Media students interning here. I absolutely love this work environment! For those of you who don’t know, NRG Media is the home of four radio stations: 107.3 The Party, 105.7 KOKZ, Rock 108, and News Talk 1540 KXEL.

InternshipThe Jocks, or radio DJs, are incredibly fun to be around and they are eager to teach the interns all about how their station operates. This is what I think is the best part about this internship—I’m not running meaningless errands, but I am learning about every element of this company.

So far I have gotten a chance to talk with the sales department, do some promotional work, and hang out with a few of the Jocks. Plans for the rest of the internship include sitting down one-on-one with people from each station and learning in-depth about it. If I find I am interested in one particular part of the company, I can spend more of my time as an intern there learning as much as possible.

But enough of the broad details. You may be asking yourself, “what would an intern at a radio station even do?” The answer: Everything!

InternshipMy schedule consists of a combination between office hours and outside promotional events, or remotes. During office hours, I get to design promotional pieces or talk with the jocks. During the remotes, I help set up the equipment and talk with the community as the event is going on. For instance, last week The Party was at various locations trying to get people to sign up to win Shawn Mendes tickets.

As interns, we handed out swag and talked to people to encourage them to sign up. I find the remotes to be extremely fun! The radio stations have a packed schedule this summer so if you see one of the vehicles come and say Hi! You can catch us at the Sturgis Falls Parade this coming weekend—Hope to see you there!


-Piper Davis

Sam’s Summer Internship Report

So far, so good! That’s how I would describe my Digital Media Leadership Internship at Cumulus Media this Summer. I didn’t know exactly what I would be doing this summer at Cumulus, and to be honest I still don’t know everything I’ll be doing. Every day is different and I love that. I have yet to be bored a single day at work because there’s always something new to learn or do!Internship

Thankfully, I have been able to learn more about audio production. That was my primary reason for doing this internship, as a radio station group is the perfect place to learn about audio production. An average day for me consists of spending the morning in the Production Office to learn about whatever my coworker is doing. He usually has a lot of work to do and can show me some interesting things I never knew about. I’m trying to get at least some kind of production lesson every morning and it’s working so far.

The rest of my morning varies pretty heavily. Sometimes I sit in on Promo meetings and learn about what the station is up to next. Other days, I might make some hooks for the station that they can use on air. I spent one day in the Traffic Office learning about how the stations schedule their commercials.

After the morning, I usually go to lunch. Sometimes I go home, since I live only five minutes away, but sometimes I get lunch with the other interns at Cumulus. I am one of ten interns at Cumulus, and though each of us have different interests, we have all grown to be friends. The other interns, as well as the employees, have really helped make my internship fun so far. I feel very fortunate to be interning at a place with such great people.


My afternoons are usually spent working on a podcast that another intern is developing. I hopped on the project as the producer of the podcast and I will have a chance to do voice work for it as well. This is what I am the most excited about! I’ve always wanted to do something like this and I really hope the podcast goes well. This is something I would continue to work on long after my internship is done. It’s also an awesome way to get experience and something great to have in my portfolio.

I usually get done at work mid-afternoon, but some days I end up doing work for them later in the evening. For example, every Wednesday there is an event that Cumulus promotes called the Zoobrew. It’s a fun event where people go to the zoo to enjoy live music and beer vendors. Last Zoobrew, I helped run this bag toss game that Cumulus had going. It was a fun way for folks to win concert tickets and other prizes.

My internship has gone pretty well so far. I’ve been enjoying it, especially given the variations in my daily tasks. I don’t need work to be consistent every day and I’m having fun and learning a lot!

-Sam King

Clara’s Summer Internship Report

“You’re in kid.” Those are the words that started it all. Those words ended my interview, and I began my Digital Media Leadership Internship a few weeks ago. I am a fourth-year UNI student currently double majoring in Digital Media Leadership and Digital Media Production with an International Business minor. This summer I am interning at Cedar Valley Broadcasting’s radio station 1650 The Fan!

Internship  What is 1650 The Fan? It is more than simply a sports radio station. As my supervisor, would say, it is “The Official Station for Cyclone Nation”. It is also home to the Chicago Cubs as well as many other sport teams. You can tune in every weekday 6-8am to listen to “Foster on the Fan.” The station’s new summer branding slogan is “Get Maximum Sports.” Cedar Valley Broadcasting is also home to two other radio networks: 93.5 The Mix and Cruisin’ KCFI. While I am exposed to all three radio station, my internship falls under the supervision of Bob Foster, program director of the sports network, 1650 The Fan.

InternshipMy job is to help promote the radio station through video! Although this may seem unusual for a radio station, since audio is their main medium and focus, transitioning to some form of video makes sense, especially with the rise of the Internet and social media. A common misconception is that radio is dying. After starting my internship, I quickly learned that it is not the case. While radio is declining, there is still a wide audience for it. My job is to help reach out to this audience, as well as new potential audience members who fit in the target demographic, and increase their interest and excitement for this sports network.

I usually go to the station for two hours, 10am-12pm, three days a week. During those six hours, I talk with and learn from my supervisor about many things. Sometimes we talk about future video projects, other times Mr. Foster teaches me how the radio network works. A few days ago, we talked about branding for the station. We have a reciprocity policy: I learn from him and he learns from me. It comes naturally. You can learn a lot from the different perspective and point of view of another person, especially with generational differences.

The main focus of my internship is to create promotional videos. Usually the first week is pre-production, in which we do creative exercise, discuss the layout and plan the shots. Then we go into production. This is done outside of the six hours, and usually in one day. After we finish filming, I complete post-production and upload the videos to 1650 The Fans’ YouTube channel. I have also worked on finding copyright free music for 1650 The Fan’s promos that air on their network.

I recently finished editing and uploading a series of videos from the ISU Tailgate Tour in Waterloo. I am just starting the pre-production phase of two video projects which I will be filming within the next two weeks. I am looking forward to what I will learn as an intern at 1650 The Fan!

-Clara Tosi

Tom’s Summer Internship Report

Summer is off to a beautiful start, and I am enjoying my Digital Media Leadership Internship here at NRG Media in Waterloo! I’ve stayed productive with all the tasks at hand and all the opportunities before me to explore the radio industry. I am exploring the world of radio broadcasting through four unique stations and formats that NRG hosts.


When I began at NRG Media, I was able to see all the pieces that come into play with the day-to-day and behind-the-scenes operations that make the broadcasting we hear as consumers happen. It’s been an amazing experience to see the amount of communication, technology, and impressive amount of adaptability needed on all levels of operations. It is fascinating to see the business take more familiar forms of media and bringing them together to reach consumers while adapting rapidly.

I’ve been able to see the ways that NRG reaches into various new forms of digital and social media. The “live” and “local” aspects of radio are some of the traditional strengths, and I see how NRG and the radio broadcast industry is updating these strengths in a competitive environment. With so many new forms of media, it is important to make sure that listeners are aware of the product, brand, and formats under the NRG Media umbrella.

I have worked with the people running the soundboard on a live remote and with those back at the station: with Craig from 105.7 KOKZ, with Connor from 107.3 The Party, and with Ned from Rock 108. I’ve seen a staggering amount of adaptability, and the on-the-fly confidence needed when it comes to running a live event or promotion. This kind of professional flexibility has been one of the most astounding things I’ve seen at NRG Media. I hope that I can hone my abilities in this internship.

I’ve also been excited to use what I have learned in Adobe Photoshop for real world applications that will soon be on various sites for the stations here at NRG.

I am excited to have the freedom and opportunity to explore NRG’s different stations, and I am even more excited to be involved in real world projects and events moving forward.

-Tom Randolph