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KVLU to host pledge drive

KVLU’s Joe Elwell, left, records an interview in the radio station’s studios, Monday. UP photo by Rachel Hellums
KVLU’s Joe Elwell, left, records an interview in the radio station’s studios, Monday. UP photo by Rachel Hellums

KVLU, Lamar University’s public radio station, will host its fall fundraiser, Oct. 23 through Nov. 2.

“The fundraiser goes towards station operations,” station manager Byron Balentine,said. “We have overall a near $600,000 budget, which comes from a mixture of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Lamar, underwriters and individual memberships.”

People interested in becoming members can call the station and volunteers will take down information and process membership by credit card, check, or cash. There is even the option of direct deduction from one’s checking account.

“We try to make it as easy as possible for people to be members,” Balentine said.

“Thank you” gifts will be available at different membership levels, and there will be a prize drawing for members at the conclusion of the fundraiser.

“Somebody who becomes a member or enters the contest will be in the running to win an Apple Watch,” Balentine said. “We try to find stuff that would be interesting to our listeners and it gives us something more to talk about than just, ‘Send us money.’ We want to keep it entertaining as well as do the business we need to do in order to stay running.”

Students are welcome to volunteer for the fundraiser.

“We have a place for students to volunteer, or anybody to volunteer for that matter, “ Balentine said. “On there is a tab that says ‘volunteer’ and there’s a form that shows where people are needed to answer phones and things like that.”

As well as volunteer opportunities during the pledge drive, KVLU has opportunities for student paid positions.

“We have need of an extra student or two to do reports for either ‘Morning Edition’ or ‘Bayou Lands,’ which is our quarterly documentary series, and we need someone for each of those, so we usually hire a couple students a semester,” Balentine said.

Former students at KVLU have gone on to other jobs in the broadcast industry, Balentine said.

“One of them is now a station manager in Pittsburgh,” he said, “One of them is working in Dallas. One went on to work at the Home Shopping Network. A couple of them work in television. One of them was in San Antonio as a reporter for one of the television stations there.”

Balentine said he invites students and faculty to visit the station.

“Anybody that wants to can have a free tour of the station — we always love to show it off,” he said.

For more information, visit or call 838-7000.

Story by Rachel Hellums, UP contributor

Category: News