In July 2012, Appalachian State University will host its sixth annual Kellar Radio Talent Institute, an incubator for future radio broadcasters. The institute is the only one of its kind, where students learn from industry professionals about the various aspects of the industry, including:
Also as part of the institute, students complete the RAB Radio Marketing Professional sales training certification course. It is open to Appalachian students as well as students from other colleges and universities. The institute began with a $500,000 gift to Appalachian from the Kellar Family Foundation and is supported by the North Carolina Association of Broadcasters.
Among the institute's 2011 participants were:
Class of 2012
"The institute has given me more confidence going forward into the industry, and has made me feel like I'll be able to handle any challenge that comes my way in this competitive field. The industry professionals that spoke to us at Kellar gave me insight into how it works in the real world, which helped me feel prepared for new challenges I didn't know I'd face." Shaver wants to become an on-air radio talent, either in a morning show or a late night rock show.
Class of 2012
"I am lucky to have been a part of this great learning experience," said Brigman, who wants to become a television news reporter or radio personality. "The Kellar Radio Talent Institute goes beyond what you learn in the classroom. We received valuable lessons about how to be successful broadcasters from professionals who are icons in the broadcasting industry. Through numerous networking opportunities I have already begun to form relationships with potential employers."
Recent graduate of Marshall University's W. Page Pitt School of Journalism and Mass Communication
"One thing we had never done at Marshall was really focus on selling and getting a hands-on opportunity to explore the sales world. With the help of Kellar, I have begun to further understand the sales business. These types of people and these types of influence are the kinds of mentors of sorts that I believe everyone needs to have," he said.
Class of 2013
"This institute helped tremendously to broaden my horizons in each and every aspect of radio broadcasting. It provided in-depth, inside information, that I don't believe you could find anywhere else. This institute was an absolutely incredible experience for me and one that I will cherish the rest of my life and broadcasting career," said Gibson, who wants to be a sports broadcaster.
Class of 2013
"Kellar allows us to take the knowledge we have gathered in the first years of our college experience and utilize them in a way that will be useful for when we graduate. You are not sitting in a classroom with a professor, you are interacting with industry professionals whose goal is helping you get that first job, not just teaching you the material. When I finish my degree at ASU, I will be able to not only take my theory and knowledge that I gained during my four years at college, but experience that will set me apart from other people applying for the same entry-level jobs."