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Thursday, May 13, 2021

KUGS named top college radio station

Senior Steven McCarragher finishes his set for KUGS 89.3 FM on Monday, Nov. 2 // Photo by Christina Becker
Senior Steven McCarragher finishes his set for KUGS 89.3 FM on Monday, Nov. 2 // Photo by Christina Becker

KUGS, Western’s small radio station, has made it in the big leagues.

Western has placed on the list of top 51 college radio stations, according to bestcolleges.com.

The 2015 list is organized in alphabetical order, with all 51 college radio stations chosen based on the radio’s online streaming capabilities, community involvement, and the studio’s facilities according to bestcolleges.com.

Junior Zach Toth, the Operations Coordinator for KUGS, said what makes the radio station unique from other college stations is they’re not afraid to do what they want at the end of the day.

Located on the top floor of the Viking Union, KUGS radio offers a diverse program of music, news and special programing aimed for Western students and the Bellingham community, according to their website.

Part of being chosen for the list includes having above average streaming capabilities to give listeners multiple radio channels for tuning in. The station broadcasts both on 89.3 and online streaming.

“A lot of college radio stations are only webcast,” sophomore Jordan Van Hoozer, Program Director for KUGS, said. “You can listen to us on the regular radio, which I think is really important.”

While music makes up most of the radio time on KUGS, there are time slots designated for news and for special programing. Volunteer DJs can be creative in whatever they want to do in reason, following the Federal Communication Commission’s rules, during their time slot.

KUGS is mostly student run and operated. The station employs seven students through the Associated Students, including Kaitlin Backus, a senior working as the KUGS Marketing & Development Director.

“We do a lot of great things here and I feel like a lot of times we’re unappreciated, so to get that recognition is affirming,” Backus said.

Van Hoozer said more student volunteers have been signing up each year, sticking to their value of involving students.

“A lot of stations affiliated with colleges will have multiple adult staff members and community members and it doesn’t leave a lot of room for students themselves to get on air,” Van Hoozer said. “KUGS is for students to get experience in radio.”

The KUGS programming schedule and online streaming can be found at http://as.wwu.edu/kugs and is played on 89.3 FM.

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