Beyond the Brown and Gold going strong after one year on air

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Rob Lightfoot and Jessica Kanady's headshots side by side. - Photos via Rob Lightfoot and Jessica Kanady

Music isn’t the only thing wafting from the speakers at Rowan Radio, the station also provides public affairs programming on the weekends. 

Many shows on Rowan Radio are informational and educational content, such as “Career Talk”, which targets those looking for specific information on careers. While talk shows like “Everything Special Needs” provide resources for those whose lives are impacted in the special needs community. 

One of those talk shows breaks the basic structure, “Beyond The Brown & Gold” follows the lives of Rowan alumni in all majors post-graduation. The podcast demonstrates different aspects of alumni life and what they’ve learned while at Rowan University. Tuesday, Oct. 10 marked the one-year anniversary of the Rowan Radio show.

“We haven’t done anything quite like this before. We’ve had random shows where there’s an [alumnus] on and they are talking about their careers. This is solely focused on Rowan alumni, every show is different,” said Derek Jones, 44, station manager of Rowan Radio. He works 40 hours a week Monday through Friday, editing and overseeing the overall production of all Rowan Radio programming.

“The one thing I love about the show, in particular, is that it’s hosted by two people who work here at the radio station who are alum,” said Jones.

Rob Lightfoot, 45, associate director and development manager, and Jessica Kanady, 37, senior assistant director of alumni engagement are the hosts of “Beyond The Brown & Gold”. The duo are Rowan alums and were members of Rowan Radio as students.

“We can always find a commonality with any alum no matter what they studied when they were here. I think we can all talk about the shared experience that we have. So I feel like that nostalgia piece is just kind of natural,” said Kanady who, alongside co-host Lightfoot, works closely with Rowan’s advancement office to build relationships with Rowan alumni. 

“I think everybody who listens can get that out of it too. I mean, obviously, we love it here or we wouldn’t be alums that came back to work here. So I think the alma mater pride is definitely there,” said Kanady.

Lightfoot and Kanady aren’t the only ones working around the clock to produce the show. The two receive help from Amanda Rennie, coordinator of advancement and foundation administration. She books the show’s guests, puts bios together, and makes interview questions for the duo.

“I think what our show portrays is that people have one sense of what they are going to do with their life when they come out of this university with a degree and for them, it looks so perfect in a box. Then as they start to move in their life they realize it looks nothing like that,” said Lightfoot. “I would say that when people leave here to be open-minded. It’s going to look very different from what you think because you might be going direction and it’s not.”

Beyond The Brown & Gold is available on all podcasting platforms such as Spotify, Apple Music, and wherever you get your podcasts. The show also airs on Rowan Radio every second and fourth Saturday morning at 8:30 a.m. of each month. It also streams Monday through Friday on Channel 2 on rowanradio.com.

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