By Khrysta Imperial Rara
Program Producer and Host
Kwentuhang Pets Atbp.
For the past two months now, the program has followed a new format. Students now come on board as weekly episode producers and co-hosts. These students are either enrolled in Broadcast Journalism or other electives like Reporting on the Environment. Every week, one student is tasked with conceptualizing an episode, finding guests, doing the research, co-hosting and updating the blog. All of them find the experience daunting, to say the least. Some may have production experience, but most don't. They have to deal with unexpected problems like guests suddenly backing out at the last minute.
But all of them admit to one thing - THEY ALL ENJOY THE EXPERIENCE.
Learning is more effective if it is enjoyed. In this case, they learn the rudiments of radio production and co-hosting and managing the blog on a weekly basis. But more importantly, they learn about the issues linked to animal rights and welfare. They get to talk to experts in the animal industry. They become aware of animal cruelty. They don't become advocates but many become sympathetic to the cause of animals. They learn that true compassion should not be directed solely toward people.
All episodes have proven to be learning experiences for me. Some were more enjoyable than others because animals also came in as guests. We have had dogs and cats sitting in the announcer's booth listening to us and even interacting with us during live discussions.
I enjoy working with my students because of the ideas they bring to the program. You have to be resourceful to find guests at the last minute. You need time to do the research. You have to have patience to follow up on the guests. You have to have guts to butt in and make yourself heard while your teacher and the guests are having an animated conversation on air. And you have to have the skill to blog about the issue and your experience.
They have all these and more.
All in all, I think it's a very good idea. Animals and students make a good mix. The result is always a good program for us and the listeners.
Happy listening, everyone!