The driver of a gray minivan gently winds the tuning knob until 91.3 FM is displayed on the screen. An old nineties song seeps through the speakers. You know, one of those forgotten classics that you just don’t hear on the radio anymore. “Hey I love this song! What station is this on?” a small but noticeable voice yells from the third row of seats.
“WIUV,” the girl in the passenger’s seat responds, blankly staring out the window.
The distant voice chimes up again, “What’s that?”
“It’s Castleton’s radio station,” the passenger says hesitantly. “You didn’t know we had one.?”
It’s sad, but true.
For those of you who don’t already know, Castleton State College does indeed have its own radio station. And for all of you who are sitting there thinking, “Yea yea, old news,” take a second to think about the other people out there who really don’t have a clue.
Even those students who say they have heard of the station before claim to not really pay it much attention.
Tyler Mills, a freshman, said that he listens to WIUV when he forgets to bring his I-Pod to the car. Fellow classmate Kelly Gerken also claims to listen to WIUV while in the car, but both students said it isn’t something that happens too often.
“A lot of people are either not aware of the station or they just choose not to call in very often,” said Myles Mickle, a five-semester veteran DJ at WIUV. “But because of our small-station status we’re open to playing any genre of music or discussion show. If more people knew that, more people would listen and participate I think.”
It’s quite possible that the radio station’s location is the reason for the little publicity it receives.
Called the “basement” by some, the bottom floor of Haskell Hall is home to WIUV Castleton.
After tunneling through hallway after hallway, one eventually stumbles upon a giant colorful mural that encompasses an entire wall. Creatively illustrated, it has a small but odd shaped building at its center, labeled WIUV. Through the adjacent light brown door, one can enter into the studio, a magical realm of computer screens and switchboards.
Some new faces to the Castleton community see the placement in the basement as beneficial.
“I think it’s pretty cool,” said freshman Elizabeth Albright. Albright’s friend, Courtney Andre, agrees with her.
“I think it’s a good idea, it gives students a chance to walk in and take part.”
While some students and staff might be complacent in the basement, things are certainly going to change for the better once the renovations to the campus center are completed.
WIUV will be moving into a “fishbowl” studio with a lot of glass specifically designed for public viewing.
“I do think the extra visibility and the new facilities will make the station a much more exciting and welcoming place for students,” said WIUV advisor, Bob Gershon.
Many upperclassmen are relieved to see this change happening to the station as well.
“Don’t get me wrong,” said junior Marie Amaral, “the station promotes a good atmosphere and I like that it’s a station manned by fellow students, but if it’s ever going to grow, it’s going to need a place where more room and technology are readily available.”
Lots of others agree with Amaral, and believe that the station should have its own personal place.
“At the campus center, with updated facilities, more students will be aware of the station and maybe drop by,” said a hopeful Mickle.
Sophomore Kacey Chiocoine agrees.
“I feel that the move to the campus center will completely change the station,” Chiocoine said. “It would certainly make me want to visit it more.”
‘Saturday Nights with Mike’ host Mike O’Donnell says that “the radio station simply needs a fresh start.”
“If you ask me,” said O’Donnell, “the basement is a dump. I’m glad that we’ll be moving into the campus center.”
While O’Donnell can’t wait for the change, Mickle takes a moment to reminisce.
“For us and for alumni of the station, there are a lot of fond memories of that location,” he said. “But a move to a better location has been a long time coming.