WSUM Program Director

The WSUM Program Director is an annual, paid student staff position at WSUM Student Radio. The Program Director of WSUM maintains and improves all aspects of the on-air presence of the radio station according to its vision, mission and goals through the following responsibilities and duties.  The Program Director is accountable to the students who comprise WSUM, the Station Manager, the General Manager and – ultimately – the Board of Regents. 


  1. Promote WSUM philosophy and services through on-air activities;
  2. Administer and direct all on-air activities, especially the administrative infrastructure (except those areas administered and directed by the General Manager);
  3. Develop and maintain connections with on-air personnel and all departments within WSUM to the extent that they have an impact on the on-air sound of WSUM;
  4. Maintain frequent interaction and communication with WSUM staff, directors/managers and committee members who affect on-air performance;
  5. Perform such other duties as are incumbent upon the Program Director or as assigned by the General Manager;
  6. Assist General Manager in maintaining a high-quality training program;
  7. Assist General Manager by reviewing daily program logs weekly ;
  8. Assists General Manager in ensuring that contractual obligations for off-air acknowledgements are met;
  9. Delegate tasks to Assistant Program Director and Production Director as appropriate;
  10. Oversee addition and subtraction of audio files to/from automated/live-assist program.


  • Actively participate in Student Management and All-Station meetings.
  • Assist in the establishment, implementation and achievement of WSUM annual goals; the budgetary planning, implementation and the evaluation of WSUM on-air initiatives and programs.
  • Serve as a member of the WSUM Governance Board and WSUM Student Management Board.
  • Seek to include a wide range of on-air programming, participate in training on-air personnel and be responsible for monitoring, maintaining and upgrading the quality of WSUM’s on-air product.
  • Assist in developing and maintaining working relations with the student government, the Department of Life Sciences Communication office and the Friends of Madison Student Radio.
  • Assist in the annual review of WSUM organizational structure.
  • Assist in actively promoting cultural diversity and integrity within WSUM and its departments.
  • Assist in the recruitment and the selection of WSUM paid student staff. 
  • Serve on the Application Review Board of the Governance Board.
  • Uphold the WSUM By-laws and actively participate in the initiation, review and implementation of WSUM Station Manual as well as department policies and procedures.
  • Recruit WSUM staff.  Help to guide the genre teams and monitor their progress.
  • Carry out those duties assigned by General Manager and/or the Governance Board.


The Program Director sets the standards for WSUM on-air staff.  You are expected to set an example, be accessible, and to assist the Station Manager in leading the station forward by creating opportunities for involvement, resolving challenges as they arise, and assisting in strategic planning as to how WSUM can better meet its mission.

The Program Director must be committed to WSUM’s core values as expressed in its Mission Statement.   In summary:

  1. WSUM will act in a service and outreach capacity for the students of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and people of Madison and surrounding communities.  The Program Director shall support and assist the student staff in the development of strong ties to these communities.
  2. WSUM will provide an educational environment and valuable hands-on experience.  The Program Director will support the General Manager and Station Manager in efforts to establish curricular connections.  Overall, the Program Director will support the educational needs and goals of students in an environment where curricular, co-curricular and extra-curricular student learning is valued.  The Program Director will be directly involved in training new personnel. 
  3. WSUM will also provide an alternative source of music and information programming to the campus and community.   The Program Director is expected to lead, encourage, empower and support the on-air staff in their efforts to offer alternatives to mainstream music and mainstream points of view as part of WSUM programming.

The WSUM Program Director is an appointed position, at the discretion of the WSUM Governance Board.  WSUM seeks candidates with on-air experience, leadership potential, co-curricular involvement and life experiences.  The staff and management of WSUM subscribe to all applicable policies and procedures governing Equal Employment Opportunities.  WSUM’s continuing policy is to afford equal opportunity to qualified individuals for employment and/or advancement regardless of race, creed, color, gender, sexual orientation, age, national origin, physical or mental disability, ancestry, veteran or marital status, native language, political affiliation, or any other arbitrary factor that has no relevance to participation in station activities.  In hiring, the station shall also conform to all other applicable laws and regulations. This policy of equal opportunity covers all aspects of employment.


The Program Director position requires a significant time commitment.  This position is not a grant or a fellowship; it is a management position that requires the staff person to be available for a variety of hours during the week, some at night and some on weekends.  Being available to students is a critical element in the successful performance of the position’s responsibilities.  Participation in all-station and student management meetings is required throughout the calendar year.  It is paid on a lump sum appointment basis.  As a guideline, the Program Director is expected to commit to approximately 20 hours per week, 50 weeks per year, with an 8HR/Day limit.  During some weeks this person will experience greater demands on their time than others.


Applications are accepted the day after the Station Manager election.  Program Director candidates are interviewed by the incoming Station Manager and the Application Review Board.  The selected candidate takes office as early as the first day of January and no later than the Tuesday before the onset of Spring Semester classes.

PLEASE NOTE:  This is in addition to the expectations laid out in the WSUM by-laws.

Keywords:WSUM, Executive Staff, Position Descriptions   Doc ID:20959
Owner:Laura G.Group:WSUM
Created:2011-10-25 13:50 CSTUpdated:2012-02-14 12:46 CST
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