Many say that radio is dying, if not already dead. This is not the case, however, for Wheaton’s radio station, WCCS, thanks to the vision and leadership of acting manager, Liam Grace-Flood ’17.
WCCS was founded in 1978 and has been providing the Wheaton community with a wide variety of music ever since. Recently, however, the station has fallen on hard times. Between equipment breaking and being stolen, the poor state of the recording studio, and the temporary departure of general manager, Thomas Holmes ’16, a lot of work is needed to return the station to its former glory. Fortunately, Flood is up to the task.
The first step in this process is to rebuild the recording studio. Tucked in Balfour behind a locked door is where the studio resides. Funds have already been secured to rebuild the station, courtesy of the Marshall Center and SGA. Further funding will come from the Roosevelt Institute National Campus Network McArthur Grant, and a crowd-funding platform known as “rooraises,” through which all raised funds will be matched. Rooraises will be accepting online donations within the next week. Although more funds are still needed for the reconstruction process, the radio station has saved enough money to commit to a recording project with the student band Hoo Lumes toward the end of the semester.
Also coming up is WCCS Fest, a concert organized by the radio station that will take place during Spring Weekend. The lineup includes Potty mouth, a girl pop punk band from Western Massachusetts, and Kool AD, a rapper who was formerly a part of Das Racist. Kool AD will also be hosting a guest lecture the Thursday of Spring weekend, hosted by the radio station in conjunction with Roosevelt and the Marshall Center. Students will have the opportunity to ask questions and learn more about the rapper and his inspirations.
Long-term plans for WCCS include the creation of a portable station that will allow them to capture lectures, concerts, theatrical performances, and other campus events to be broadcast to a wider audience. The station plans on applying for low power FM status, which will allow them to expand and broadcast to surrounding towns. They also hope to hold educational programs for local middle school and high school students to teach them how to use recording and broadcasting equipment. The main goal of these projects is to transform Wheaton into a community hub and an anchor institution.
With all of these exciting prospects and plans for the station, now more than ever is a great time to get involved with WCCS. Anyone interested in joining or learning more about Wheaton’s radio station is encouraged to contact Liam Grace-Flood for more information.