By Jhoana T. Merino-Martinez
As we know, many student organizations and programs on campus have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Radio station 89.1 WFDU-HD3, a free-formatted station staffed and run by FDU students, also has born the brunt.
Following the university decision to switch to remote courses in the spring, the radio station had to close its physical station to both staff and students.
Stationed on campus, the radio channel is known for its diverse music programs spanning 25+ shows. Along with sports talk shows, university public service announcements are routinely aired.
“We are recording and broadcasting shows remotely,” said Ian Ranzer, FDU professor and faculty advisor for WFDU.
Ranzer has been a part of WFDU since 2015 and has led the student station since 2017. He carries its motto, “the student voice of Fairleigh Dickinson University,” with passion.
Radio is far from dead in today’s era; it is a favorite among the public for entertainment, along with television and internet. National Today surveyed 1,000 people about how often they use radio, finding that nearly every two out of three people (67%) stated that they listen to the radio every day. Since its debut in 1920, radio has been an important communication tool in our community, especially amidst the pandemic, given the survey results.
Now WFDU broadcasts can be heard over multiple platforms such as HD radios, online or using the Apple and Android-compatible WFDU app.
Virtual channels allows the station to be more flexible with content. Collaborations with Professor Seth Cantor’s sports journalism class and Florham campus’s radio station, WFDM, are next.
In order to keep up with the schedule, WFDU is actively recruiting students to become a part of its growing radio family.
“Students can still get involved with the station and record shows remotely and broadcast the recording over the air,” Ranzer said. “All that is needed is a microphone and a laptop!”