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WVUD student member Liz Webb conducts an interview at the radio station studio in May.

WVUD student honored

Photo courtesy of WVUD

National Federation of Press Women awards Webb first prize for radio feature

Elizabeth Webb, a senior at the University of Delaware, took first prize in the Collegiate Writing Features category of the National Federation of Press Women 2016 (NFPW) communications contest.

Her interview submission, Lake Street Dive: Soul, Spunk, and Side Ponies, The Music Room, was recorded on May 19, 2016, and first aired on May 24 on WVUD 91.3 FM, the University's radio station. For this episode of The Music Room, Webb conducted a telephone interview with Bridget Kearney, bassist with the band Lake Street Dive.

Webb's submission won both at the state and national levels of the competition, first winning the Delaware Press Association (DPA) 2017 communication contest for entries published or broadcast in the calendar year 2016.

The NFPW Collegiate Writing Features category required the submission of a single story written by the entrant for print, the internet, radio or television.

For radio and TV stories, the candidate had to be the reporter, as in Webb's case.

The anonymous NFPW judge raved about Webb’s interview: “Judging? Oh, no. I was enjoying! I felt I was visiting with Bridget [Kearney], too. But you asked questions I wouldn’t have thought to ask, which gave me the behind-the-story story.”

Webb was responsible for the content of the interview, developing an interview plan, writing the questions, adapting them on the spot based on Kearney’s responses and creating a supporting web page.

Webb also completed all of the post-production work: writing and recording the interview introduction, selecting and incorporating the music included in the program, sequencing all the different audio content and editing the audio files.

“I enjoyed selecting the music for the broadcast and finding just the right places to insert the tracks. One challenge with editing the audio files was finding the right balance between keeping the authenticity of a phone interview and making Kearney’s voice as clear as possible,” said Webb.

“Working on various episodes of The Music Room, I’ve learned how important strong planning and pre-interview writing are to making a successful 30-minute radio show. ‘Lake Street Dive: Soul, Spunk, and Side Ponies’ required a lot of preparation and writing to make a successful ‘spontaneous’ interview.”

Webb has worked as a student DJ on WVUD HD-2, The Basement, for the past three years. The last two years, she has worked on the WVUD team producing two regular programs, Campus Voices and The Music Room.

Over that time Webb has conducted interviews with local and national bands on The Music Room and is part of the student crew putting live music on WVUD's YouTube channel.

Webb was also a co-interviewer for the April 27 Campus Voices episode that featured John Byrne, Distinguished Professor of Energy and Climate Policy at UD, titled Shining Light On Climate Change.

Webb was voted WVUD student member of the year for the 2016-17 school year. She is also seeking a bachelor’s degree in public policy, history, and foreign languages and literatures-Italian Studies, and is a member of the Honors Program.

“Working with students like Liz, so eager to learn and so willing to do the hard work required to produce engaging radio and web content, is one of the real pleasures of volunteering at WVUD,” said Richard Gordon, manager, IT Communication Group, WVUD community volunteer and lead producer for The Music Room


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