Monday, January 1, 2007

Why this Blog?

I am creating this blog to provide a forum for discussion about the future of WREK-FM. WREK is Georgia Tech's Student-Operated Noncommercial 40,000 FM Radio Station, which broadcasts in Atlanta at 91.1 MHz. WREK was founded om 1968 by a small group of students and has been continuously managed and operated by students for the last 38 years.

Recent proposals that are detailed in the next post would remove student control over WREK during part or all of the broadcast day and relegate student broadcasts to an HD radio subchannel which requires the purchase of a $200+ HD Radio Receiver to hear.

Why do I care?

Many years ago, when I was a Georgia Tech student, I worked at WREK. It was by far the best experience of my college career. Building, managing, and operating a 40,000 Watt radio station was a lot of fun, but it was also a great learning experience.

For the last 38 years, students have been responsible for all aspects of this station, including programming, engineering, and management. The students who have worked at WREK have benefitted greatly from this experience, whether we are now broadcasters, engineers, managers, or even college professors. I'd really like to see today's Georgia Tech students continue to have the same opportunity.

Students have been good stewards of WREK for 38 years - why does Tech's administration think they can do better by leasing it out now? Is it about money? Is it a desire to enhance Tech's image or "branding"? What can be done to convince the Tech administration of WREK's value? I hope we can explore these questions in future posts.

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