The Student News Site of Bear River High School

The Current

The Current

The Current

Bruins broadcast on radio

Mr. Bus makes an unexpected announcement to Liv DesAutels and Maya Cruz. Photo by Maya Bussinger

Our school has a great student-run journalism program where essential skills like writing and finding the facts are cultivated. More recently, a few outstanding Bruins have had the opportunity to level up their skills through the Youth News Corps program at KVMR radio in Grass Valley.

The program, which allows participants to produce their own audio stories to later be aired, tackles four main topics. They are environment, social justice, mental health, and education, which are assigned to different students from the district. 

The advisor for the Corps at Bear River, Daniel Bussinger, was well equipped to take on the position.

“The local radio station KVMR in Nevada City, 89.5 if you want to listen in, created a program called the Youth News Corps. They had an application process to pick a few students to do radio journalism on their show,” Bussinger detailed. “Students submitted a news prompt of their own to see if they should be taken seriously. They ended up choosing two students from Bear River, one from Nevada Union, and one from Bitney Springs. So local high school kids are under the wing of the KVMR news team, and those guys are really professional and know what they are doing. I’m the advisor for Maya Cruz and Olivia DesAutels, the students selected from our school, and I go to zoom meetings with their news team and I ask them a lot of questions. It’s a really great opportunity.”

Senior Maya Cruz, a selected applicant for the program, has already been able to air her first story.

“We come up with ideas for our stories based on our news feeds. For example, my feed is mental health and currently I’m doing a story on the correlation between mental health and music therapy,” said Cruz. “We interview people who are related to the story. I’m interviewing a music therapist. I record interviews, the intros and outros, and finalize and edit.”

As a happy coincidence, Bussinger actually happened to hear Cruz’s story live.

“I heard Maya Cruz when I was just listening to the radio, it was KVMR news, and they said ‘One of our stories is going to be Maya Cruz interviewing the librarian.’ Sure enough, there was her pre-recorded interview with Jessica Dax,” said Bussinger. “They talked about how the library is more than just a place to check out books, it is a place for people to gather and get to know each other. It was a really good interview. Both Maya and Mrs. Dax did a great job. She edited it together, to take out pauses like when you say ‘um’ and things like that. It came across as professional.”

Another talented journalist accepted into the program was Liv DesAutels, who had past experiences to compare to.

“My personal category is environment, so I am in the process of creating five environmental related audio stories,” DesAutels said. “It is a lot more intensive than a written story. You have to obviously produce an interview. I have a special audio recorder that I have to use. I have to make sure that the audio is clear and nice while I am interviewing. After that I put in my narrations throughout the interview and my intro and outro. Then I edit it all together, which takes the longest to do, but it’s fun once you get the hang of it.”

DesAutels has already aired one of her environmental stories, and you can listen to it here. DesAutels says the story is about the proposed Centennial Dam project from NID.

“Olivia DesAutels also already made one, and I also think that she is doing another one soon,” said Bussinger. “Anybody can go to and look for podcasts or archived programs and you can listen to them.”

Overall, the Youth News Corps has already made a lasting impact on our Bruins.

“It has introduced me to real world journalism a little bit, beyond my humble school newspaper,” DesAutels explained. “I have interviewed people who have real jobs in the real world. For example, I have interviewed a National Geographic videographer and environmentalist. It’s cool to expand my horizons. 

“I love how I get to meet new people, it’s my favorite thing, and I get to meet them through interviews,” reflected Cruz. “I like hearing about their stories.”


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