Tag Archives: College Radio Day

Column: Why College Radio Day is Important

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College Radio Day is a very special day for me and the other DJs and faculty, and staff here at WMCO.  College Radio Day is a day to celebrate what makes college radio: the listeners, the DJs, the faculty, the supporters, and the creative freedom that college radio has over every other medium.

College Radio Day started in 2011, as a way to do two thingsraise awareness of college radio as well as give back to the community and thank them for the support.  The first part is the easy part.  College radio is a place for unsigned artists can play their music and there’s those who break out and become some of the artists you hear on Top 40 commercial stations. Just to name a few that have played on WMCO’s airwaves, we’ve debuted The Script, Bastille, Alanis Morrisette, Bastille, Norah Jones, Ziggy Marley, and Aloe Blacc. There’s many, many more but I couldn’t give you a big enough list.

The second half is the more difficult part of College Radio Day to talk about.  Over the last few years, there have been many college radio stations that have been sold by universities who have gone into debt. Stations from Rice, Gerogia State, and Vanderbilt were there one day and gone the next.  The unfortunate reality of the situation is that that there are colleges that go into debt and sell off their radio station to make up some of the difference. This could potentially happen to each and every college radio station across the country, including ours.  Here at WMCO, we are thankful to have such a supportive Muskingum administration who knows the value and the skills we learn. Radio is expensive, and College Radio Day is a way to show appreciation to those who listen and give us the facilities we currently use.  We here at WMCO aim to not take anything for granted during our time here at Muskingum.

For me, college radio is a way of life.  I joined radio here my first semester on a whim. Dr. Marshall, the WMCO Station Manager, promoted becoming a part of WMCO through our training program. I honestly just tried it out because I was a freshman and wanted to do something new and different and it’s been one of the best decisions I’ve made. Since then, I have gone up the ranks, starting off as a trainee, then becoming a general staff member, then News Director for two years, then finally becoming the Program Director at the start of this school year.  It’s been a wonderful experience and honestly, there aren’t enough words to express my gratitude, but I’m going to try….

First, I have learned so many valuable skills at WMCO.  From learning how to communicate on air to a whole audience…to learning what it takes to become a leader of an organization.  Over the years, I have grown exponentially in my interviewing skills.  I’ve been able to interview so many different people, from country music artists Craig Morgan and Mitch Rossell to a Holocaust survivor, Dr. Renate Neeman. I’ve had so many opportunities given to me here that it still blows my mind.  Who can say things like that before they’ve graduated college…they’ve interviewed a major country artist or a person that survived such a horrible tragedy like the Holocaust? Or…wrote 200 news stories in one school year, with the help of a news team? Honestly, not many students can. And it’s the experiences every DJ gets here and at other stations that will leave also leave an impression on future employers.

The other thing is that I’ve honestly met some of the absolute best people through college radio here at WMCO.  I met my best friend, Kayla Rausch, through my experience with WMCO.  My freshman year, there were three seniorsMark Danner, Jess White, and Kaylee Lukacena—who took me under their wing. I still talk to them to this day because there’s such a strong bond between us.  That’s not even to mention the faculty here that trains us. Dr. Lisa Marshall, Dr. Jeff Harman, Dr. Tom German, and Mark Bohach are some of the best mentors we could ever ask for.  They answer our questions…they push us to be better…they give us the best opportunity to do the things that we love to the best of our ability.

In my freshman year, we were in our newsroom and created a “family tree” outlining who trained who on radio staff.  It got a little crazy, but it became the foundation that is WMCO. I updated the tree this semester and branched it out further and added more names, thanks to some alumni that filled in the blanks.

The original WMCO Family tree, created in December of 2013.
The original WMCO Family tree, created December 2013.

I showed this to our new trainee class this semester, standing in front of them, and said becoming a part of WMCO means that you become a part of a family and ultimately something that is bigger then just one person.  

I said three years later I believe that statement more then ever. You can see the growth in the two trees, but what you don’t see is that each and every person here is a part of the WMCO Family.

The updated WMCO Family Tree, created September 2016.
The updated WMCO Family Tree, created September 2016.

We fight, we argue, we don’t always agree on how to do things. But at the end of the day there is nobody I’d rather go to for help, to hang out, to enjoy my four years here at Muskingum.  The people I’ve become friends with have seen me at my absolute best and my absolute worst and if that isn’t family, I don’t know what is. I can’t tell you how many heart-to-heart conversations I’ve had and how many good stories that have come from the second floor of Caldwell Hall.

So here’s to College Radio Day! Here’s to all the people that make it possible! On behalf of everybody here at WMCO, thank you to the Muskingum University administration, the faculty, the staff, the listeners, the underwriters, and all those who support us in what we do.  We couldn’t have done this for over 55 years without your support!

In honor of College Radio, WMCO will be broadcasting live for 24 hours Friday, Nov. 4. From midnight to midnight, you can catch some of your favorite DJs on air. From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., WMCO will be broadcasting live on the Quad where students can come and talk to us at our tent.

College Radio Stations Across the Country, World Unite in Thanks

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While many radio stations spend a typical day playing music and providing local news, on Nov. 4 college stations across the nation and world are additionally giving back to their communities through their broadcasts. 

College Radio is celebrated across the nation, this year on Nov. 4, 2016.
College Radio is celebrated across the nation, this year on Nov. 4, 2016.

Muskingum University’s station, WMCO, plans to do just that. Program Director, Marty Kurtz, wholeheartedly believes in the spirit of College Radio Day, which this year falls on the first Friday of November.

“It’s a day to give back to everybody that makes college radio possible,” said Kurtz.

College Radio Day began in 2011 to ignite interest and listenership for the medium of college radio. Additionally, support for the day of recognition grew as a result of colleges starting to sell their radio stations to minimize institutional debt.

Rob Quicke, WPSC FM General Manager from William Paterson University, founded the event in 2010. The College Radio Foundation (CRF) has established the College Radio Fund, which aims to support the current and future operations of college radio stations across the United States. 

The theme of College Radio Day 2016 is "Igniting the Soul."
The theme of College Radio Day 2016 is “Igniting the Soul.”

The College Radio Foundation’s mission is to give grants to stations who are in immediate and dire need of the money, such as outlets who need operational funds or are on the brink of shutting down.  The foundation is awarding grants to stations during College Radio Day.

WMCO, along with stations around the world, will participate in College Radio Day festivities. WMCO is hosting a 24-hour live broadcast day, Friday, Nov. 4,  from midnight to 11:59 p.m. with a two-hour Quad remote from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Kurtz, who will be on the air for six hours, is among the WMCO staffers who appreciate the opportunities college radio provide students.

“I really think it’s important that all college radio stations in general really support this because there are many, many stations out there that get closed out of nowhere,” said Kurtz.

Marty Kurtz in the WMCO Production Studio.
WMCO Program Director, Marty Kurtz in the Geyer Air Studio.

The 22 remaining hours will be spent broadcasting from the Geyer Studio inside of Caldwell Hall.

Kurtz enjoys the response of his staff and thinks they have “have taken advantage of that opportunity…and are really excited about being in Caldwell [Hall] late at night just talking on air,” said Kurtz.

Kurtz and his fellow seniors participated in WMCO’s last 24-hour College Radio Day broadcast during their first year at Muskingum, and he is now looking forward to this second all-day experience.

“The management staff members of WMCO really wanted to bring that back and really were excited about [it],” said Kurtz.

WMCO averages seven hours of daily live programming, so scheduling 24 hours of live airshows demonstrates the pride WMCO shares for the event.

Collegeradio.org is home to information about past, present, and future College Radio Days.
Collegeradio.org is home to information about past, present, and future College Radio Day events.

“I think there is something really cool to [be] doing something outside of the box,” said Kurtz.

WMCO is one of 24 stations in Ohio participating in College Radio Day and is not the only station promoting live broadcasts for 24 hours.

“It strengthens our core here at a college radio station like WMCO,” said Kurtz.

Read Kurtz’s opinion column, “why College Radio Day is important.”

Collegeradio.org provides more information about the events stations have planned for College Radio Day 2016 and pictures and information about past College Radio Days.

WMCO thanks Muskingum University, station underwriters, and the listening audience for supporting 55 years on air. Listen live Friday, Nov. 4.

WMCO Friday, Nov. 4 Program Schedule:
Midnight-1 a.m. – Olivia Brown & Jacob Proctor
1-2 a.m. – Olivia Brown & Nicole Navicky
2-3 a.m. – Marty Kurtz
3-4 a.m. – Brenna Busby & Garrett Ring
4-6 a.m. – Zach Vinski & Blake Roush
6-7 a.m. – Manda Gaeckle
7-8 a.m. – Nikki Skeens
8-9 a.m. – Rachel Schlarb & Chris Morgan
9-10 a.m. – Marty Kurtz
10-11 a.m. – Olivia Brown
11-11:15 a.m. – “Beyond the Headlines” | East Hill Sand Volleyball Court
11:15 a.m.-1 p.m. – Live Remote from the Quad with Manda Gaeckle, Rachel Schlarb, Chris Morgan, Zach Vinski, Brenna Busby, and Marty Kurtz.
1-2 p.m. – Ashley Glazer
2-3 p.m. – Marty Kurtz
3-4 p.m. – Nikki Skeens
4-5:30 p.m. – Andrew Dunlap
5:30-6 p.m. – The Orbit News Desk
6-8 p.m. – Jacob Proctor
8-8:30 p.m. – The Muskie Sports Blast
8:30-9 p.m. – Marty Kurtz
9-10 p.m. – Nicole Navicky & Marty Kurtz
10 p.m.-Midnight – Aaron Eno