Thursday, April 8, 2010

Cottonwood Students Learn About Ham Radios

By John Larson

SOCORRO – A small group of students at Cottonwood Valley Charter School will be joining the global community as they become skilled as ham radio operators.
Members of the Socorro Amateur Radio Association (SARA), Jim Lommen, Vern Leavitt and Jon Spargo, installed an antenna and transceiver at teacher Kim Berlat’s classroom Tuesday, Mar. 23 for the burgeoning CVCS Ham Radio club.
Charter School students Benjamin Bohling, Frankie Carrillo, Casper Huang, Seamus Parker, and Alice Zhang, are the charter members of the charter school’s club.
Club members are currently studying to pass the FCC Element 2 exam. Once they pass their exams, a call sign can be assigned to the station.
“SARA is providing the equipment for no charge, and we provide study materials for the kids to pass the FCC license exam,” Spargo said. “They should be able to take the exam in about one month’s time.”
Spargo is part of the network of ham radio enthusiasts in Socorro who volunteer their time and equipment to be ready to assist emergency services in times of a disaster.
“At over 100 licensees, Socorro has one of the highest per capita ham radio operators of any town, anywhere,” he said. “We feel its important to encourage young people to learn what it’s all about and hopefully carry that interest into their adult lives.”

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