Sophomore Abigail Snyder and senior Rachel Kookogey received nominations as finalists for the upcoming national College Broadcasters, Inc. awards.
CBI will announce the first place winners in October in Orlando.
Hillsdale has a history of radio students receiving the nomination for CBI awards. The school had four finalists last year, one in 2019, and two in 2018. WRFH Radio Free Hillsdale 101.7 FM has won two national first place awards in the past three years.
Scot Bertram, general manager of WRFH, said he is very pleased with these nominations.
“Abigail and Rachel both bring a strong commitment and a sense of professionalism to everything they do here at the station,” Bertram said. “It’s satisfying to see judges at a national level acknowledge the superior work they’ve done here at WRFH.”
Bertram said it means a lot for two Hillsdale students to be nominated for these highly competitive awards.
“The fact that we had two students honored, and that Rachel took two of the four nominations in her category, just confirms the quality of the content students here produce on a daily basis,” Bertram said.
Kookogey became involved in Hillsdale radio the second semester of her freshman year. Toward the end of her sophomore year, she received her first nomination for her radio piece called “Sports Story Time.”
Kookogey said her love for hockey inspired her with the idea for “Sports Story Time” and became the fuel for the show’s success.
“It has been really cool to see that that has been the thing that has been super successful here,” Kookogey said. “That speaks to how we will be successful doing the things that we love because we will put the most work into them.”
Kookogey started her show because of the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I started in the spring of 2020 when we were sent home,” she said.
Similarly, Snyder started recording her show because of the effects that COVID-19 had on the world.
“I started ‘The Virtual Voyage’ during the COVID-19 pandemic, which was a time when a lot of people could not travel,” Snyder said. “I wanted to give people the opportunity to experience sights they wouldn’t be able to otherwise,” Snyder said.
Snyder said her favorite part of radio is the variety of opportunities she has received. .
“I have always had the dream of being Ben Shapiro’s co-host, so I was interested in radio as a medium for communication,” Snyder said.
Snyder’s show takes people all around the world, showing them historical places and beautiful views, all from the comfort of their homes.
Snyder said she is honored to represent Hillsdale College in this competition.
“In one year, Hillsdale has transformed my educational experience, Snyder said. “I am so thankful for its impact on me and I see this as a small way for me to represent the Hillsdale community at large.”
Kookogey said she thanks Bertram for her success.
“Mr. Bertram has done a lot with the station and trained us really well and all the students are super eager,” she said.
“I think it’s so cool how well Hillsdale’s radio station has done in national awards because we have only existed since 2016,” Kookogey said. “It is really cool that as a small college and a small station we have been so successful in such a short time.”