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Courtesy of Laynie Erickson

Libby Williams, News Editor

Laynie Erickson

Laynie Erickson is “busy all the time,” but that’s how she likes it. The senior media and journalism student is news director at the station, is one of the hosts of daily show “The Five,” and created and hosted a show-turned-podcast “Looking for Love With Laynie” last spring. 

Erickson said she’s been interested in radio work since high school.

“My junior year of high school, I was looking into finding a school to play volleyball for and I did a visit with Central. One of my assistant volleyball coaches at the time asked me my plans for school and what I wanted to major in. Originally I really wanted to do sports broadcasting,” Erickson said. “On my initial visit … I fell in love with the radio station. It seemed like a really cool opportunity.”

She started at the station as a freshman in 2019 with a sports show, “Layin’ it Up.” When the pandemic started, she filled the role of social media coordinator.

“We decided that we’d make content through our website and draw [students] to seeing our sites, seeing our blogs, and making some more video content because a lot of people weren’t in Ellensburg to actually tune into the ‘Burg,” Erickson said.

The pandemic led to Erickson’s video show, “Looking for Love with Laynie.”

“I used to go on Zoom dates with boys from Central, and turn it into a three to five minute highlight of the most awkward moments, the funniest moments, the best moments,” Erickson said.

The show was a hit across social media, so Erickson and two co-hosts turned it into a podcast, which she also edited.

“Looking for Love With Laynie” was just one of the shows that helped 88.1 the ‘Burg bring home the IBS award. While the ceremony couldn’t be held in person, Erickson said she and the team were still overjoyed to win.

“We weren’t all together, but we were all watching at home,” she said. “After they announced that we had won, our group chat was definitely going off, and we were all super, super excited. It was cool because it was all of our work put together into one submission.”

During her last quarter at Central and working for the ‘Burg, Erickson continues to serve as news director, and helps host the “Wildcat One-On-One,” where she interviews big names to the CWU community.

“We had Governor Inslee a few weeks ago, we had Mayor Lillquist, we had President Wolphart,” Erickson said, “We’ve had professors and people on campus, students, some social media influencers.”

Out of all her shows and involvement at the radio station, she said one thing will always be her favorite part.

“‘Burg fam’ is seriously the best,” Erickson said. “There are some pretty cool people that work at the radio station … we all have super creative ideas.”

Dave Hartless 

If you sit in the Bistro on a weekday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., you’ll hear political science major Dave Hartless’s voice during his show, “Lunch Time Rewind.” 

“It’s music that I grew up with, it’s kind of what I know,” Hartless said. “It became a more natural fit than it would be for me to try to do a show with newbies.”

During his show, Hartless discusses each song he chooses in depth.

“Where it came from, who the artist is, was it a sample? Was it an original? What was going on during that time when the song came out? Did the culture have an influence on that song? Did the song have an influence on the culture? Things like that,” Hartless said. 

Hartless said he’s worked for the station for three years. The pandemic started just a few weeks after his training. He said being back in the station with everyone feels completely different from working remotely.

“This year is the first year we’re all in there all the time,” Hartless said. “So it really is almost like a whole new experience for me, even though I’m very familiar with the station.

Radio is just a part of Hartless’s busy schedule. He’s usually on campus from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. He said he’s not sure if radio is something he’ll pursue after college, but he’s loved having it be a part of his long days.

“I wouldn’t call it hard … it’s not hard because I love what I do, I really mean that … I take it very seriously, but it doesn’t feel like work.”

Besides his daily show, Hartless also works on the “Wildcat One-On-One,” and got to talk to Inslee and Kim Schrier alongside Erickson. 

“When I interviewed Kim Schrier, I was kind of awestruck,” Hartless said. “She’s a very charismatic, very outgoing woman and ridiculously smart … I was like a little kid in a candy store. Then there was Jay Inslee. He was very personal, very down to earth. It was a fun interview.”

Both Erickson and Hartless recommend people volunteer at the radio who are interested.

“Even if you think you don’t have a chance at radio, try it. It’s open to all majors,” Hartless said. “You don’t have to be a communications major or anything like that to do it. Just come try it, it’s a fun experience.”

“We have opportunities to start your own show, even if it’s not on our main [station], there’s the Burg 2, which is more of our online streaming,” Erickson said. “We have really cool trainers that train people even if they’re not planning on going on air and are just doing a podcast.”