Graduate becomes radio inspiration for fMU departments



Melissa Rollins, Staff Writer

Spring 2001 graduate Andy Matthews, known to his listeners as Fisher, has been a radio personality on 103X for the past 11 years.

Raised in Massachusetts, Matthews and his family moved to Timmonsville, South Carolina in 1991, just before he entered high school. A self-proclaimed class clown, Matthews said that he had no plans of attending college after graduation.

“I really didn’t see myself going to college,” Matthews said. “I was the class clown.”

A meeting with his guidance counselor during his junior year changed his mind. When he told the counselor that he wanted to be on the radio, she encouraged him to pursue a degree in communications. Matthews said that he did not know getting a degree in communications to work on the radio was even an option. After some research, he ended up on a tour at FMU.

“When I took the tour over there, I loved it,” Matthews said. “I thought then, ‘this is what I want to do.’”

Matthews ended up graduating with his bachelor’s degree in mass communications-broadcast with a minor in theatre.

While he started as a part-time weekend radio show host, that position was brief. Within six months of being hired, he was doing a night show full-time, transitioning to mornings a year later. Currently he is co-host of Fisher and Mattie in the Morning, which airs Mondays thru Fridays, 6-10 a.m. Aside from the morning show, he also does radio commercials, DJs events (sometimes at FMU) and hosts a show on another radio station, also owned by Quantum Communications.

Keith Best, professor of fine arts and theatre arts-acting, remembers Matthews as a very likeable, good student. Best said that he uses Matthews as an example for his current classes of a student who took his schoolwork seriously and took what he learned and applied it to his job.

“I am really happy to see that he is doing well,” Best said. “He is a local example I can use of someone who used a class and an education in the way it is intended to be used and has been successful.”

Best also said that he listens to Matthews’ radio program most mornings on his commute to work.

Dr. Elizabeth Zahnd, associate professor of modern languages, was another of Matthews’ professors during his time at FMU.

“He was a great student,” Zahnd said. “He was really enthusiastic about learning French and he made the class fun to teach. He just has a great personality.”

Although Matthews has received serious offers to move to Alaska, Arizona and Egypt to do radio shows, he said that he really loves the Florence market.

“I like to be out in the community,” Matthews said. “I know this community, I went to Francis Marion.”