WDWN 89.1 FM, the student-run radio station at the Auburn Campus of Cayuga Community College, celebrated its 40th anniversary last fall, but CCC students, faculty, and the Fulton area community have been unable to hear it until recently. The culmination of a nearly 10-year endeavor, the new radio translator on Cayuga CC Fulton Campus transmits the signal in Auburn to 97.7 FM, to allow the Fulton community to hear the broadcast.
“The translator is important because it promotes [WDWN] in an uncharted listing area that wasn’t there before, and it also informs students that there is a broadcast radio station at the college,” said Jeff Szczesniak, WDWN advisor. “Having the translator on the Fulton Campus gives everyone in that listening area a new alternative for non-commercial original broadcasting that wasn’t there before.”
The translator has been a long time coming. The idea for the Fulton translator came in 2001 to include an important part of the College community in the WDWN listening area. The application was submitted to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in March 2003, and finally reviewed and granted license in July 2008. Because of funding issues the translator was not up and running until 2011, the station went on-air August 11. After working out the kinks, the station is fully functional and broadcasting on 97.7 FM.
“WDWN has a huge influence on music, and a tremendous impact on new and emerging artists. What we decide to play has national impact,” said Steve Keeler, professor and Humanities and Communications Division chair. “The station is one of few college stations to report to CMJ.” The report to CMJ includes the top songs played on reporting radio stations, which sends the list to recording studios, records stores, and the like.”
“Any student can participate in the radio station, and that has been the standard since day one,” Szczesniak said. “Not many people are aware of that.” The purpose of the station is to train students to run and work at a real radio station—all of the DJs are Cayuga students or community volunteers.
WDWN has something for everyone. Daily, the station plays college alternative—music from new and emerging artists. From 7 p.m. to 12 a.m., students broadcast nightly shows of music genres of their choice; ranging from rock and alternative, to rap and hip-hop. Public service programming plays Saturday mornings, and Saturday nights feature soul, hip-hop, and urban music. To appeal to the cultures of the community, the station plays traditional Irish and Italian music on Sundays.
Listeners in the Auburn area can tune in to WDWN at 89.1 FM, and those in the Fulton and Oswego areas can listen at 97.7 FM. For more information about WDWN of to become a volunteer, contact Steve Keeler at firstname.lastname@example.org.