KTEP Science Studio’s light formula keeps audience tuned in

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For more than three decades, KTEP radio’s Science Studio program has been one of the most successful shows of the station. The show talks about science in a way that the community can relate to while getting to learn something new.

“I started this Science Studio program over 30 years ago, because I like radio, I like, conversation, I like science,” said UTEP chemistry professor Keith Pannell, the show’s creator. “We have to keep it relatively light in order to make sure people don’t fall asleep with so much science. So we learned a lot of the background, the little stories of the guest each week.

The program starts with Pannell introducing his guest speaker for the show and providing a bit of personal background.

“They always start off talking about the guest, the scientist. They talk about their life before they became a professor, a doctor or whatever,” said Kimberly Garcia, the producer of Science Radio. “So, it kind of makes it relatable, because I think sometimes we have a notion that scientists are so disconnected from the real world. I like how the show integrates the real world with the science world.”

Keith Pannell, left, talks with a guest on Science Studio

Keith Pannell, left, talks with a guest on Science Studio

The purpose of the program is to showcase science for the borderland community as well as to get more students involved in the field of science. Guests may be people working in the science field in our region or be interviewed by phone from anywhere in the world, said Pannell, who is originally from England.

“Sometimes we get people from the campus, they will come and present the title of what they want to talk about, and I say, ‘Oh that looks interesting.’ Or other times I’ll just see something in the newspaper or BBC news. I say, ‘Oh, we should talk to that guy or that lady and get them on the show,’ ” Pannell said.

The show airs 7 p.m. on Sundays on KTEP 88.5. To hear past shows, visit the website at http://ktep.org/programs/science-studio

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