Many students pass by it every day and don’t even think twice. Nestled in the main hallway of Caldwell is one of the area’s most prestigious college radio stations: 89.9FM WLCA.
WLCA has produced several notable alumni that shape the sound of radio in both St. Louis and nationwide. A state-of-the-art facility run completely by students under the supervision of Station Director Mike Lemons serves as WLCA’s home.
WLCA Alumni Makena Carmean now works as an on-air host for Emmis Communications, the company that owns 105.7 The Point, KSHE, NOW 96.3 and other local radio stations. She looks back at her time at WLCA with the fondest of memories.
“I made some lifelong friends, learned so much about the industry I work in, and I developed a love for radio broadcasting that continues to grow,” Carmean said. “WLCA is so special because it’s a program in a community college, not some big flashy university. Everyone in the program knows how to come together and contribute instead of competing against each other for a certain role. At WLCA there’s enough room for everyone to learn and grow from each other, and I think that is what makes it such a great station.”
Mike Rider, the imaging director at 101 ESPN, also looks back at his time at WLCA fondly.
“My two years at WLCA are some of my fondest memories,” Rider said. “WLCA and Mike Lemons’ guidance helped prepare me for a job in radio. I wanted to be an on-air personality, which I was for a few years, but the other knowledge I learned opened up the door for other opportunities at other stations. WLCA prepares you for every aspect of radio.”
WLCA has been the starting point for radio workers around the local area, and the nation. With the alumni citing its great preparation for future work in the field, it is no surprise that WLCA has been nominated for multiple College Music Journal awards.
Those interested in learning more can contact Lemons at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.wlcafm.com.