Whether she is behind the microphone or organizing the program schedule, Stella Ligon frequently finds herself in the halls of the University of Maine’s radio station. When she isn’t working toward a degree in new media, she spends her time as the program director of WMEB 91.9FM radio station.
“For me, having a radio show is magical,” Ligon said. “You are doing this thing and actual people listen in and call. It’s a way for you to connect to people. Even though you’re sitting alone in this small studio, people can hear you and they can relate to what you play in ways they can’t always relate to Top 40 music.”
Her involvement with the station began early on in her academic career at UMaine. She immediately knew she had found her place on campus.
“During my Welcome Weekend, one of the members called me out because they liked my shirt,” Ligon said. “I already had an interest joining because I’ve always had an interest in music. I felt like it would be a good fit for me, so I applied for a DJ position. My show was originally my personal time. I could just sit down, take a breather and listen to music. It was a time to decompress.”
Before joining WMEB, Ligon didn’t have any experience working in music or broadcast. However, she did have a love for composing playlists. She would make them as a gift for her father every Christmas, and create playlists for herself based on the seasons of a year.
“When you make a playlist, you’re in your head. It’s kind of a selfish thing. It’s a way for you to express your feelings in a healthy way, and it’s cool because people can relate and connect to them,” Ligon said.
For Ligon, the station is special because of the community it cultivates. She feels as though the staff and DJs have created a sort of makeshift campus family. She wants the station to be a supportive space, and hopes students who apply feel welcomed into it.
“I think ultimately the station is a place on campus for kids who don’t really fit anywhere else,” Ligon said. “It allows those who have an interest in music to come together. The friendships I have made through the radio station are some of my strongest. This is where we go when we aren’t in classes. We hang out and talk about things whether it be music or our personal lives.”
Ligon feels as though the leadership experience she has gained from this position will follow her after after she graduates. She hopes to someday produce a niche magazine, and believes that many of the skills she has learned from the station will help her manifest that dream.
“I never really felt like I fit in anywhere in high school, and a lot of people here had similar experiences. It’s neat to see how this place brings everyone together.”
Tune into Ligon’s radio show, “Sad Girls Power Hour,” on Tuesdays from 11 p.m. to midnight on their website, wmeb919.com.