Evelyn Hartley, 37, never imagined she would be hosting her own radio show when she started classes at Mt. San Jacinto College in 2009. Now she’s known as DJ Eve Hart, an intern training to be an on-air personality at Temecula’s 101.3 FM The Mix.
A wife and mother of two, Hartley handled the finances for her husband’s business and had a knack for numbers. Deciding it was time to get a college degree, she enrolled at MSJC as a business major. But after a year of study, she realized she wasn’t following her dream.
“I was working toward a goal that others thought I excelled at, but when I thought about it, I didn’t want to be sitting behind a desk eight hours a day,” Hartley said.
Hartley found inspiration while watching an entertainment news show and resolved to become either a television or radio broadcaster. After looking at the college’s offerings, she inquired about the college’s radio station, AM 1620, The Eagle Radio Network, a product of the Audio & Video Technology Department. She signed up to start the prerequisite classes in audio and video technology in spring 2010.
“I felt like a deer in the headlights the first day of class because I didn’t know anything about audio technology,” Hartley said. “But I wasn’t going to let it defeat me. I was following my heart, and I ended up being very comfortable.”
By the start of 2011, Hartley was ready to enter the radio production class. She also set her sights on interning at the Inland station she grew up listening to, 99.1 KGGI. She landed an interview with the Saturday disc jockey Jason Wagers, known on the air as Kid Jay. After a few quick questions during the show’s commercial breaks, he put Hartley to work, launching an internship that lasted nine months.
“I couldn’t believe it was happening,” she said. “Kid Jay really opened up the door for me. It was a great learning experience.”
While learning the inner workings of a major radio station at KGGI, Hartley enrolled in the radio production class at MSJC and started logging time on-air. Hartley was then invited to start her own show on AM 1620 last fall. DJ Eve Hart now hosts “An Hour with Eve Hart,” 9-10 a.m., every Tuesday and Thursday.
Hartley also began interviewing for jobs last fall, but nothing stuck. In January, she spotted an advertisement for a 101.3 FM The Mix (KATY) promotional event at a Menifee restaurant. She approached the staff and got an on-the-spot interview with Program Director Jim Daniels. She started interning in January. This month, she was informed she would begin training to become an on-air personality.
“She has the golden shoe,” said Dr. Michael Conner, dean of the Career Technical Institute at MSJC. “It’s like the tumbleweed effect — she just keeps moving forward to the next thing.”