I got in touch with the new guy running the radio stuff back at school, and as one of my professor friends implied, it sounds like he's really got his stuff together. I asked him if I could squeeze out a couple of air shifts before I move, and he was all about it. Sweet. He also said that because of the Internets and automation, I could at some point even do a show from Seattle. How cool is that? Radio is not a very good profession, but it sure is fun when it's for fun.
I love that he's thinking about automation, because for better or worse, that's a lot of what the business is these days. But it also means that he embraces the difficult future he has in teaching college students in this field. It's not a matter of simple, "Show up, play music, talk, go home." The Internet and the machines have changed everything. It's the kind of cross-disciplinary stuff everything we used to call broadcast and journalism encounters now. The media is so free form that it's hard to nail down exactly what audio and video programming is, or where journalism goes.
For all the good and bad I got out of that program, I'm still grateful for what it was. I feel hopeful about the future of academics in the field with his kind of big picture thinking.