School talk

Emerson Allen has a long and meaningful history with WBDG


Sara Keslter

Emerson Allen during his weekly School Talk show.

“Life is good, but life is hard.”

These are the words of Emerson Allen, the voice behind WBDG’s own radio show, School Talk. Honest, unadorned and true, they describe what his weekly production is all about.

When Allen burst onto the radio scene almost ten years ago with a debut episode about sagging pants, he knew he wanted to talk about issues relevant to teenagers, their parents and their teachers.

“I want to help students realize they can talk about certain things that affect them now and in the future. I want to help them make better decisions and be informed,” he says.

As for the teachers and parents, he believes that his show gives them a chance to know what’s going on and hear a form for promoting the good at Ben Davis.

Allen has definitely succeeded in that regard, a fact proved by his influence outside of the airwaves. When he worked with two students to create an episode on suicide prevention, one of the causes to which he is most dedicated, the story was picked up by the New York Post. It also inspired Ben Davis to instigate a still-running program dedicated to stopping suicide.

Aside from disregarding spatial constraints and permeating the world outside of the radio, Allen’s take on issues refuses to be bound by time.

Allen explains how his show has changed over the years.

“It’s more of things not changing; there’s just different people. The issues we talked about years ago are still issues,” Allen said.

Sagging pants are as much of a concern now as they were in September of 2003, and most of his content will continue to be relevant for many years to come.

What does this mean for you? It means you can start listening to his oldest archives right now and hear about topics that affect you today. Or you can simply start with the airing of his next show, tuning in every Tuesday at 6:45 a.m. or waiting for the replays at 5 p.m. on Wednesdays and 2 p.m. on Sundays.

Just remember to take notes because as Allen warns every week in his opening sequence, “There will be a test! This is School Talk!”