As the Chicago Cubs clinched a historic World Series win Nov. 2 in the bottom of the 10th inning, Dave Miska, a 1994 radio/sound alumnus and sound engineer for Chicago’s CBS Radio, was in the sound booth celebrating as he worked the controls for the Cubs Radio Broadcast.
After graduating, Miska said he worked for ESPN Radio for almost 10 years before starting at CBS Radio, where he has worked for six years. While at ESPN, he worked on the Chicago White Sox broadcast when they won the 2005 World Series. As a baseball fan and Chicago native, Miska said it was an honor being able to witness and work as both teams took home the coveted trophy.
“It’s a lot of hard work, but I feel very fortunate to be doing this in my hometown and to be a part of such interesting and exciting things,” Miska said.
The World Series win was especially important because it had been more than a century since the team won the title in 1908, said Dahlia Sherman, junior American Sign Language–English interpretation major who grew up as a Cubs fan.
“My biggest feeling was relief that finally we won,” Sherman said. “Finally the curse is broken. Finally we don’t have to say, ‘Maybe next year.’”
As the Cubs progressed further in the series, Miska said his job became more intense. The team’s success was no longer a local story but had spread to national news and even global news. He added that he felt the pressure on him and his co-workers.
“You feel the historical significance,” Miska said. “The last time they won, there was no radio. Radio hadn’t been invented yet, so this is kind of uncharted territory. We want to make sure we get it right.”
Although he had originally set out to work in a recording studio, Miska said he took an opportunity to work in radio in 1999, where he discovered his other interest.
“Sports broadcasting is a passion of mine,” Miska said. “Sometimes, I feel like I got steered into something where I was meant to be.”
Josef Anwuzia, senior audio arts & acoustics major, said although his interest is in studio engineering, he has always had respect for the sound engineers of radio and broadcasting shows.
“It takes a lot to do [what they do], not everyone can do that,” Anwuzia said. “I have many friends who are more inclined to do broadcasting because they like being a part of that process where they’re capturing an event and providing that [experience] for other people so they can also share in it.”
Miska said he would not have found his passion if he had not opened himself up to new opportunities. He advised Columbia students interested in his field to never turn down any chances that come their way.
“The battle is showing up. Be prepared and take every opportunity you can,” Miska said. “Sometimes, that means you are going to work holidays, and sometimes that means you are going to work New Year’s Eve or Sunday morning at 5:30 a.m. All that experience puts you in the driver’s seat.”