1 Reply Latest reply on Nov 7, 2013 11:03 PM by Jake Kremer

    How To Attract New Members

    Richard Phillips

      Amateur radio is a high tech hobby with many facets.  I think the average uninformed person thinks it is an outdated method of communication using Morse code and smoke signals.  This couldn't be further from the truth.  How can we get the message across to younger people?

      Yes, you have to take a test and apply for a license but it is now easier than ever.  The other day I asked a student what it would take to get him to join the amateur community.  His quote, "It has to be cool".  So how do we make it "cool"?


        • Re: How To Attract New Members
          Jake Kremer

          Hmm...I remember having this discussion in the past. I think maybe mentioning or demonstrating digital modes may help to bring a "modern" view to the hobby. Digital modes allow one to make many contacts easily and quickly, and they can be nice for people who may prefer not to talk as much. Perhaps just throw a video out there with examples such as the below. A person could then download  HRD/DM780 for free to decode the signals (the ones that are not shown in the video but have been captured in that sample) and mess around with the software even if they do not currently have a license.


          9H1CL RTTY QSO - YouTube


          I also think that "cool" is a subjective term that means different things. I think one of the nice things about amateur radio is that there are many facets that can draw people in. For me, it was trying to gain a deeper understanding of RF and the electronics behind them and also the fact that I could build some simple kits that I could then use to talk to people thousands of miles away. I think there are probably a lot of people at MSOE that have the interest and it is just a matter of getting them into the club once for a meeting to watch people operate. I know I was interested in high school and even got a tech study guide, but it was not until I attended the first club meeting and saw you guys operating that I was really compelled to take the exams and become a member.


          Over the last few years it really has become very inexpensive to get into the hobby with all of the Chinese HT manufactures that have surfaced. I'm not sure how many people know that. I also get many people saying "don't you have to know morse code to pass the tests? I could never do that.", so maybe emphasizing the fact that there is no longer a code requirement might help as well.


          Sorry for the wall of text, I was sitting here and just thinking for a while.


          Are there any new members this year? I really need to start coming to the meetings again...perhaps I can make an effort tomorrow.