Skip to Content
College of Human Development, Culture, and Media

Seton Hall Students attend #Happens Rock Conference

WSOU staff with metalcore band, The Ghost Inside.

WSOU staff (left to right; wearing badges) Zach, Matt, Chris, and Julian pose with American metalcore band The Ghost Inside, raising their horns.

A handful of students recently had the amazing chance to be flown to Las Vegas to attend a nationwide rock 'n' roll and radio conference, #happens, at the end of February. The students, all on-air talent at Marconi award winning WSOU 89.5 FM in South Orange New Jersey, were privy to professional development opportunities unlike any other. As seasoned professionals gathered to discuss the state and future of the radio industry, WSOU staff eagerly listened and participated in organized panel discussions to further advance their skills as the future of the field and learned lessons they could apply to their positions at 89.5 FM. The conference synthesized both the music and radio industry from a business perspective and yielded invaluable insights regarding how that relationship can be its most effective.

A common highlight for many were the music showcases that #happens organized. These included a wide variety of established musicians and up and coming bands, ranging in genre from alternative rock to heavy metal. For the metal heads at 89.5 FM, bands like Oni, Conquer Divide, Palaye Royale, and The Ghost Inside were exciting additions to this roster. Howard Jones of Killswitch Engage also made an appearance to perform the track "Aura" with Oni. WSOU has been playing heavy metal music since 1986, and has grown a strong, dedicated community of fans which includes a vast alumni network of on-air talent.

The students that made the trip to Las Vegas have not stopped talking about the #happens conference since it ended almost a month ago. Social Media Director Samantha Klein commented on the conference, affirming it "was an especially enlightening experience" that "has inspired me to focus on building a local music community at WSOU." Assistant Music Director Matt Reade shared that the opportunity "was an extremely gratifying and educational experience [that] allowed me to develop networking skills, [and] professional social skills." Assistant Music Director Zachary Rodgers happily wrote that "the #happens conference was truly an unforgettable experience that really helped to open my eyes to the professional side of the radio industry and create memories from fantastic experiences." Assistant Music Director Julian Landin asserted how "WSOU has been an amazing outlet for my passion for music, [and] it’s been great to be able to broadcast and be connected to so many bands that I love." All these students also expressed their gratitude to Seton Hall University, WSOU 89.5 FM and the #happens team for making the experience a dream come true for them as they continue to aspire to advance their careers in communications.

According to their website, "#HAPPENS is an organically driven, rock, and alternative new music experience that brings together the best radio programmers, label and streaming executives, culture-tastemakers, artists, and brands, inspiring new ideas in the ever-evolving music community."

About WSOU:
WSOU 89.5 FM is an entirely student-led and operated college radio station at Seton Hall University, in South Orange, NJ. The program is designed to give college students real experience in a communications workplace. WSOU has been playing metal music since 1986, amassing a dedicated and loyal fan base worldwide. Make sure to stream us on IHeartRadio or tune in to hear the Loudest Rock!

Categories: Arts and Culture, Campus Life