The Sunday News
Judith Phiri, Business Reporter
LUPANE State University (LSU) will develop its campus radio station to an urban contemporary edutainment institution that mainly caters for the needs of the student body and the surrounding communities.
The university is one of the six academic institutions which were awarded a campus broadcasting licence by the Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe (BAZ). Other institutions are National University of Science and Technology, Great Zimbabwe University, University of Zimbabwe, Midlands State University and Harare Polytechnic College.
In an interview, LSU marketing and communications director Mr Zwelithini Dlamini said the radio station which will serve the university and its surrounding communities will be an urban contemporary edutainment station.
“It will function like a community radio station, just with a radius of five kilometres. The LSU radio station will be an urban contemporary edutainment station that mainly caters for the needs of the student body which is mostly aged between 18 and 30 years, as well as the surrounding communities,” said Mr Dlamini.
He said as such, 60 percent of the radio programming will be built around music shows featuring urban contemporary. He said the remaining 40 percent of programming will be speech which will touch and focus on current political, social and educational issues around the listeners’ learning needs.
Mr Dlamini said the radio station will serve the university community and its surroundings through the provision of relevant radio programming that speaks to various aspects of life, educational, social, spiritual, cultural, technological, entertainment and health.
“As such, it will benefit the university and communities as it will offer a platform of disseminating accurate and relevant information, it will meet entertainment needs through creative and responsive programming and content.”
He said that another advantage of the station is that it will incubate and nurture talent of students doing Media Studies and entertainment-related courses through providing them with a platform to practice what they are learning and offering them a springboard to launch their careers.
Mr Dlamini said they aim to create a platform for engagement and discussions through the hosting of public discussions, public lectures, interviews and such other related programmes.
“We are also going to see a link between the university and its surrounding communities for information sharing, sharing of ideas and communal well-being, while also fostering national pride and identity through the prioritisation of local content in the programming for the station.”
Mr Dlamini said another key feature of the station will be that content will be generated mainly by the students and lecturers through a radio club. He said that the content will be diversified to cater for each faculty, staff of the university, local decision makers, policy makers, parents, guardians, and students from other schools in the community, students and staff of colleges, university or other educational institutions.
“Other key pillars that will be focused on will be addressing issues on student health, education, environment, agriculture, social development, community development, food and nutrition and household remedies, among other,” said Mr Dlamini.
Higher and Tertiary Education, Innovation, Science and Technology Development Minister, Professor Amon Murwira said the campus radios were an important innovation that provided a platform where complex scientific concepts will be made accessible to the people. Prof Murwira said these are expected to promote student training, research and entertainment in tertiary education institutions.