RIC Student Already on Air at WPRO
“I like to joke that I have no social life” Andrew Augustus says as he explains how he is able to maintain a full-time job as a WPRO 630 reporter and his academic studies at Rhode Island College, which he is on track to finish in December 2014.
“My schedule is work, school and then girlfriend, and that’s it,” Augustus said. “But I love working at WPRO. It’s kind of surreal that I’m in the business at 22 years old.”
Augustus has been at WPRO since August, but he first worked there as an intern in spring 2011, after his coverage of the 2010 gubernatorial race for The Anchor TV and WXIN, Rhode Island College’s radio station, put him in contact with WPRO’s news staff.
During his internship, he got valuable hands-on training in audio technology, script writing, interviewing and what he called a generally “good introduction into what the radio business is.”
“I had a passion for radio since I first came to Rhode Island College, even though I intended to be a math major,” Augustus said. “Once I started classes, communications seemed like a natural fit. I’m concentrating in political science, because the news always comes back to politics.”
After his WPRO internship, the station helped him find a part-time job at a radio station in New London, Ct., hosting a one-hour show on Sunday, where, he said, he gained additional practical experience.
He kept in touch with the news team at WPRO and when a reporter position opened up, he was encouraged to apply.
Now, he’s working Monday through Thursday as a field reporter and on Sunday mornings delivering the headline news at the top and bottom of every hour.
At times, his work and student lives come together. He recently covered the ribbon cutting of Alex and Ani Hall, the college’s new art center, for WPRO.
“What I like most about my job is not knowing what I’m going to be doing any given day,” Augustus said. “I always say that to be a reporter, a person has to have a special mindset. When something potentially bad or dangerous happens, your first instinct is to go out, find it and find the facts. Other people would run away.”
His intent is to stay in the news radio business once he’s graduated. Though he’d eventually like to move to a larger market, he’s very happy at WPRO, where he works with several RIC alumni.
“I love that, too,” Augustus said. “I am product of Rhode Island College and of WPRO. I know this isn’t going to be easy. Time management is key. I know this is going to really benefit me in the end.”