Sound of the school

Jones Student Radio looks to add to JCP music scene


The Jones Student Radio (JSR), a student-led radio station, is set to launch during the second semester of the 2022-23 academic year, with music and talk segments planned for the station.

Sophia Franklin ‘25, one of the co-founders of the JSR, stated their mission of a collaborative student music platform.

“We really want it to be student-led. First and foremost, we want people to have the opportunity to do creative segments and really get their voice out there,” said Franklin. “We think it’s primarily music focused. It kind of was born out of our mutual love of music, and we want to share that with the Jones community.”

Rachel Viano, the English teacher who sponsors JSR, said the two co-founders pitched a music-centric station for the school community.

“They definitely were interested in the music side of radio and just said they wanted to start a radio station here at Jones,” said Viano. “I was immediately intrigued because I also worked on my college radio station as a program director.”

Cameron Dickinson ‘25, the other co-founder, expressed his excitement to create a new platform for the Jones community to share their talking points.

“I’m really excited to meet new people and have interesting discussions about things that I’m passionate about,” said Dickinson. “Like [discovering] different artists that some people don’t know, but then others do. I want to meet the people who also like those artists.”

Franklin also talked about potentially adding talk segments on the radio.

We’re going to have talk segments, where people can talk about artists that they like, and hopefully we’ll try to reach out and do interviews with Chicago artists and that’ll be more like the talk radio aspect,” said Franklin.

Viano expressed her initial ideas for the radio station stemming from her days in college.

“I think initially I envisioned a radio with a diversity of shows and [spaces] to talk [about] sports and stuff, but I think that just comes from my experience at an established college radio station,” said Viano. “That’s definitely too ambitious to start with, and both Cameron and Sophia are really interested in the music side, so we’re definitely using that as our focus.”

However, the process of gaining music licensing changed Dickinson’s vision of the radio to include more talk segments.

“It’s very difficult to figure out what’s legal and what’s not legal on the radio,” said Dickinson. “We’ve had to switch to a lot more of talking about music rather than just playing music, which I feel is more educational and productive for the Jones community. I feel like it’s still a good idea, but it definitely was different from what we initially imagined.”

Viano hopes for meaningful student engagement with the radio.

“I hope it’s popular, and I think I look at it more through the lens of it being a really productive outlet for the students who are doing the producing, putting together their shows and scripts and being able to express themselves as the producer,” said Viano. “At the same time, I would hope that there would be a consumer end of it, students who are listening to their friends and enjoying the music or being exposed to new music, and if it grows to outside [music-based radio] shows, talking about what’s going on in sports, politics and pop culture.”

Excitement is already brewing, with interest being expressed to the co-founders about its startup.

“People have already really been excited and not just our friends, but people in the hallway have been asking us when we were putting up the posters, so I’m hopeful that people will really like this and enjoy it and engage with it,” said Franklin.

You can find the JSR website here.