Amateur Radio license testing during pandemic

For those wishing to take Amateur Radio licensing examinations during this pandemic, there are a few options. As testing availability is subject to change, please contact the organization performing the testing to confirm the details.

  • The Hamfesters Radio Club conducts FCC authorized VE tests every 2nd
    Saturday of the month at the Oak Forest Village Hall, 15440 S. Central Ave., Oak Forest, Illinois 60452.  For more information contact Al Buikowski (N9ZD) or visit 
  • MRAC holds monthly VE testing at HRO in Milwaukee, reservations required. More information at
  • The Schaumburg Amateur Radio Club (SARC) is providing limited VE testing.  More information about the SARC testing sessions can be found at the SARC website (

August VE Testing Session Canceled

Due to the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, the August 18, 2020 in-person VE testing is being canceled.  It has been reported that the Schaumburg Amateur Radio Club (SARC) is providing limited VE testing for those who do not want to wait for the local testing session in November.

More information about SARC testing sessions can be found at SARC VE Testing .

K9YA Telegraph – A free monthly ham radio eZine

The Robert F. Heytow Memorial Radio Club has published its general interest amateur radio eZine, K9YA Telegraph, since 2004.  The K9YA Telegraph contains new, never before published articles, pictures and cartoons of interest to all radio amateurs and is read by hams in over 100 countries.

Subscribing to this monthly publication is free and can be done by going to the following link:  Subscribe to K9YA Telegraph

Each month you will receive an e-mail, which will contain a hyperlink to download the current issue. To view the publication, subscribers must have Adobe Reader version 7.0 or newer installed on their computer. 

Unlike other publications, subscribers only have access to the current month’s issue for approximately two weeks, so it is a good idea to download the PDF when you receive the monthly email.  There is also a limited number of back issues available to subscribers, but occasionally the subscribers are given access to more back issues as a special treat. 

To learn more about the K9YA Telegraph and the Robert F. Heytow Memorial Radio Club, visit their site at

-via NT9E

Joseph (Joe) Szczubelek, K9DMV – SK

It is with great sadness to announce that Joe Szczubelek, K9DMV, became a silent key on June 18th, 2020.

Joe was a long time member of MCWA having participated in many MCWA activities over the years including Field Day outings. Up until his sudden death, Joe was looking forward to participating in the MCWA Field Day at Rush Creek the following Saturday.

He loved DX with a passion and would often check into the EN52 6m and the McHenry 10-10 nets.

Joe would have been 74 on July 1st. We will miss you.

Joe, K9DMV, getting it done at the 2014 Field Day as other MCWA members observe.



FCC: Virtual VE testing is permitted

With in-person Volunteer Examiner (VE) testing canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) stated in a Public Notice dated April 30, 2020 that VEs can administer tests in a remote manner.

The FCC grants VE Coordinators leeway as to how tests are administered and proctored. This notice is good news for those wanting to sit for an amateur radio exam, but were not able to do so because of the pandemic.

The full text of the notice follows.

FCC Public Notice (04-30-2020)