Student radio channel launches in Liepāja

September 2 saw the launch of a new student radio station, broadcasting in Latvia's third-largest city, Liepāja.

Radio SWH Spin 94.6 FM is a joint project of the University of Liepāja and commercial radio group SWH, providing students with experience as DJs and producers and practical experience in media.

Rector of the University of Liepāja Dace Markus said the new initiative would prove valuable in giving students real experience of the media world as well as contributing to their coursework in some cases - while participation on the station was open to all students regardless of their course of study. This year the University of Liepāja has seen a 5% increase in the number of students.

The youth-oriented channel SWH Spin ran in prototype form last year, but on September 2 this year it got a full launch and slogan in the form of "Student radio for the city". 

Among the voices being heard on the airwaves are Signe Blumberga and Evelīna Vasilčika. Evelīna is studying music at Liepaja University while Signe has already completed her university studies and graduated in cultural management.

“I was thinking about whether to apply or not - I thought others would be better! But I tried, went to an interview and here I am!" says Evelīna.

Meanwhile Signe stresses that having different personalities on the air will give different styles to broadcasts. 

Veteran broadcaster Jānis Šipkēvics, Chairman of the Board of AS Radio SWH, said the reasons for backing the station went beyond commercial considerations and that he hopes to help grow a new generation of media professionals.

“25 years of experience obliges me and others at our station to do so, and I can also repay my debt to my home city. Here you needn't be afraid to make a mistake, and it allows young people to broadcast themselves for three hours. As they themselves said, 'We want a radio that I don't want to turn off'."

Broadcasts of Radio SWH Spin will initially consist of three original shows. It is broadcasting on 94.6 FM in Liepāja, as well as on the website  www.radioswhspin.lv

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