KJZZ's Teen Radio Project is an educational outreach program designed to mentor the next generation of public radio reporters and create a forum for Arizona teens to express their views about issues that affect them the most.
The KJZZ Teen Radio Project is a course that gives high school students experience in a newsroom, setting working on radio stories from concept to completion under the guidance of veteran public radio journalists.
During the course, Teen Radio reporters pitch story ideas, book and conduct interviews, record field audio, write, fact-check and voice their own stories. They are trained to use state-of-the-art editing equipment to mix a myriad of sounds and sound bites, music and their own voices to create news features about teens for teens.
The classroom lecture component includes topics such as copywriting, storytelling techniques, ethical standards and time management. While the students must adhere to KJZZ and NPR standards, they have the freedom to experiment beyond traditional methods and produce stories that incorporate their perspectives and style. Stories that meet approval of KJZZ's News Director may air during parts of KJZZ's broadcast day. All completed stories will be archived on this website.
Tune in online right now to hear what Teen Radio reporters are investigating.
Preparing for a Presidential Visit:
President Barack Obama made a stop at Mesa's Dobson High School on Feb. 15, 2009 to roll out the administration's financial bailout package. Teen Radio Project reporters Zach Nelson and Tory Cole take you behind the scenes to see how their school prepped for this event.
Teens Getting Around:
Just as the Valley's overall population has grown, so too has the teen population. And all of those teens need a way to get around town. Dobson High School students Jessica Testa and Rebecca Bever talk to their peers and transportation officials about the challenges of getting around town with a younger perspective in mind.
Flying Toward Higher Education:
For many high school seniors, with graduation come big choices about education, career and life in general. Coronado High School student Matt Butson speaks to professionals about the trials and tribulations of transitioning to adulthood and whether college is right for him.
The state recently introduced the "Draw the Line" campaign in a broader effort to combat underage drinking. A group of high school students decided to look closer at teen drinking, and more specifically teens driving under the influence of alcohol. They took their questions to newsmakers and peers to find out how pervasive this problem is in Arizona.
South Mountain High School students Robert Green and Tiniya Heard delve into the growing community of homeless youth. From homeless teens to "transitional" youths who are just one step away from being homeless, Robert Green obtains a more personal perspective about the pressures, struggles, and stereotypes of becoming homeless in Phoenix.
Dobson High School Teen Radio Reporters, Dustin Little and Libby Alonge investigate how the current recession is affecting teen life in Maricopa County.
Arizona's teen birth rate is the fifth highest in the nation according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. South Mountain Teen Radio Reporters, Celestina Muñoz and Jesus Castro talk to students and education experts to figure out why Arizona teens continue to take this premature step into adulthood and whether sex education is as effective as it can be.
Shoot 'Em Up
According to a Pew Internet and American Life Project study, 97% of America's teens play video games, some of which feature violent content. What kind of affect does this violence have on the teen psyche? Teen Radio Reporter, Zach Nelson investigates this question by interviewing Mike Jaret, the Production Manager of Tucson based Postal 3; Dan Gillmor, Professor of Mass Communication at ASU and local teen gamers.
Participants gain a sense of accomplishment in having produced professional radio stories, developing skills they can use in any career, increasing their awareness about community issues and having opportunities to express their perspectives and creativity. Their peers benefit from news they can relate to, while KJZZ adult listeners gain insight into the mindset of Valley
Matt Butson, who was among the first Teen Radio reporters, says he has benefited in several ways, especially during the production of "Flying Toward Higher Education." "Crafting a real news story doesn't get dull. This time in particular allowed me to put my energy towards something that is really important to me at this place in time," Matt says. Matt did not intend to pursue a journalism career or college after high school until he became involved in Teen Radio, which he says was the impetus for his decision to enroll.
Kelly Bohon, an Arcadia High School Student also sees the program as empowering. "As part of the program, we can get our thoughts across to adults who usually do not care, while relating to our other peers and community," she says.
One of the instructors, Karen Werner, believes that Teen Radio helps students develop skills they can use in any career. "For me, it's come as a surprise just how much we need to beef up the basics–like how to make a phone call, ask for an interview, prepare questions in advance. In that way, I really think this program helps every student, not just the ones interested in a journalism career."
KJZZ's Teen Radio Project is made possible by the Friends of Public Radio Arizona (FPRAZ), a volunteer 501(c)(3) organization created by local community leaders to increase involvement, awareness and funds for public radio stations KJZZ 91.5 FM and KBAQ 89.5 FM.
FPRAZ board members are passionate about the stations' public radio mission, which aims to provide Arizonans lifelong learning opportunities, personal enrichment, cultural exposure, and enhanced knowledge through thought-provoking programs.
KJZZ's Teen Radio Project is made possible in part by grants from Deborah Carstens and the Carstens Family Funds, Richard DeSchutter and the Gemini Foundation, Denise and David Higgins, Mike Minor, John Roberson, Linda and Jim Saunders, Melanie Trent, the Alexander & Baldwin Foundation, the employees of Matson Navigation, the US Airways Education Foundation and the Employees Community
Fund of Boeing Mesa.
If you're interested in joining KJZZ, FPRAZ and our current Teen Radio Project benefactors in supporting this community outreach program, please contact KJZZ Development Director, Louis Stanley at (480) 834-5627 or by email at email@example.com
Ann Miles is South Mountain's KJAG General Manager and Station Advisor.
We welcome and encourage you to get involved in KJZZ's Teen Radio Project.
To share your comments and story ideas, please visit us online at KJZZ.org.
If you're interested in creating a Teen Radio Project for your school, please contact KJZZ Development Director, Louis Stanley at (480) 834-5627 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Click here to listen to South Mountain High School's Ann Miles' perspective on KJZZ's Teen Radio Project.
Copyright 2009 © Friends of Public Radio Arizona