Appalachian State University international exchange student Maciej Kautz is bringing new voices and views to campus and to Boone through his radio talk show "Let's Talk International" which airs every Monday at 5 p.m. on campus radio station 90.5 WASU.
Kautz, a native of Poznan, Poland, and a law student at the University of Poznan, is studying communication law, television production and Spanish during his one semester at Appalachian.
"I came to the United States to study for a semester because I feel that it's the most diverse and the most competitive country in the world," he said. "I think the experience will be worth a lot and future employers will appreciate that I've had this experience."
Kautz is one of the first students from the University of Poznan to participate in an international exchange with Appalachian.
Hosting a 30-minute radio talk show on WASU was a way for Kautz to combine his passions for media, exploring the world, learning about new cultures and meeting new people.
"It was something unique, so I checked it out when I got here and thought why not give it a try," he said.
Each show focuses on a different part of the world, with guests who are students, faculty or staff from that show's particular area of focus. Kautz never discusses the same region two weeks in a row. The shows are also uploaded to his Facebook page after they air on WASU at http://www.facebook.com/letstalk530.
Regions covered so far include the Middle East, parts of Africa, parts of Asia including China and Taiwan, Latin America and Central America, Oceana, and parts of Western Europe. Kautz's next shows will explore other parts of Africa including Ethiopia, Brazil and the United Kingdom.
Most shows include each guest discussing the region and culture of the area he or she comes from, and how that area differs from the United States. Kautz has recorded three special edition shows: the first one discussed the similarities and the differences between Scandinavia and Spain; the second one discussed the themes of love and fun with guests from Spain, Kenya, Malaysia and Taiwan. The third special edition show, which will air Dec. 19 as Kautz's last show before he returns to Poland, will discuss how Christmas is celebrated differently around the world.
"I think people can learn a lot from my show," said Kautz. "There aren't a lot of international voices around here and I'm hoping that mine gets heard. The popularity of the show is definitely increasing on Facebook. I have more than 100 followers now, and approximately 200 people have listened to my shows after they're uploaded to my Facebook page."
Kautz has enjoyed his time in the United States.
"I've enjoyed experiencing all the events, discussions, campus facilities and the flow of ideas on campus," he said. "Anyone that wants to say something here can. The professors are great; they're funny and friendly. There are really mountains of opportunity here at Appalachian."