Radio’s next generation of pros descend on Appalachian State.

For the fifth consecutive year a group of radio pros will gather at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC to train the next generation of broadcasters. Created in 2007 by consultant Dan Vallie, the Kellar Radio Talent Institute will have its largest class of students to date. A group of 21 students from North Carolina State University, UNC-Greensboro, Marshall University and Appalachian State begin their 10-day program today. “They come with enthusiasm, questions, ideas and a developing passion for the business,” Vallie says. This year’s guest faculty roster includes 27 broadcasters from all parts of the industry, ranging from Forever Broadcasting owner Kerby Confer, talent coach Don Anthony and broker George Reed. Vallie created the summer program to attract, train and coach students interested in radio — something that gets little attention in most college curriculum today. To date seven out of 10 students who’ve completed the training program now work in broadcasting, including on-air, sales, promotions and as a traffic director for companies including CBS Radio, Entercom, Clear Channel and CNN. The Institute has received a partial sponsorship from the North Carolina Association of Broadcasters for the 2011 program. Appalachian State also received $500,000 from the Kellar Family Foundation to create the institute in its Department of Communication.