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UND students look into radio station

GRAND FORKS - University of North Dakota student leaders are seeking input into whether the college should establish a radio station.

Jackie DeMolee, chairwoman of the Board of Student Publications, said it's too early to say what shape the station might take, if it would start out purely as an Internet radio station, if it would ever broadcast over the air or where funding would come from.

Ideally, DeMolee said, the radio station would be the broadcast equivalent of the Dakota Student newspaper, the publication the board now runs. Like the paper, it would have a student crew and management with a full-time financial adviser to watch the spending, she said.

But, she said, it's up to students.

For several years, she said, she's heard fellow students talking about a radio station and read editorials in the Dakota Student. What she'd like to know is how serious they are about the hard work of running a radio station, she said.

At this point, the whole idea is a blank slate.

There's no equipment, not much expertise and no frequency available that she knows of, according to DeMolee.

She said she's heard that UND has looked at an emergency radio frequency and that some students feel a radio station could piggyback on that frequency when there aren't emergencies.

Some students have said they'd like to offer news and opinion on the radio station while others want more diverse music.

The university could, she said, seek advice from NDSU students, who started out with an Internet radio station and later began broadcasting over the air.

UND already hosts KFJM, the Prairie Public station, but DeMolee said she doesn't think there's many opportunities for students to run their own programming.