Photo courtesy of Steve Meil
Rather than curse the darkness, sometimes it’s better to light a candle, or in some cases, start your own radio station.
The student-run radio station AROUSE will offer diverse programing for students to listen to and take part in. A small but rapidly growing organization, the station has FM aspirations and goals of playing local music.
“Basically what we’re trying to do is set up a radio station here at Ohio State because we noticed that it sort of lacks such an option,” said Steve Meil, founder of the Amateur Radio Organization for Undergraduate Student Entertainment. “We want to bring something new.”
After coming to OSU last year, Meil sought out opportunities for students interested in entertainment radio. When he didn’t find anything, Meil determined that the best solution was to fill the void himself.
“There weren’t really a lot of options,” he said. “By Spring Quarter last year, I decided that we should start a radio station of our own.”
AROUSE continues to draw the attention of students, bands, concert venues and student organizations alike.
“We’re offering the chance to do sound production and work in the field,” Meil said. “It’s good for students, and it’s good for people who want to get their music out.”
Although other stations have existed in the past, various problems eventually led to their demise.
“The reason why student radio doesn’t exist now is because of mistakes and mishaps and lack of funding that happened in the past,” Meil said.
What separates this station from previous missteps is official university involvement, Meil said.
“We brainstormed a lot to come up with the right offices he needed to contact,” said Barry Shank, adviser to the project and professor of comparative studies.
There is a considerable amount of work to be done before the station goes live.
“The most important thing is getting the Federal Communications Commission license,” Meil said. “Within a year, if everything goes right, we could start broadcasting.”
There are doubts concerning the availability of the broadcasts, however, as fewer and fewer students have access to traditional radios.
“I have an iPhone, and unless there’s an app that will get radio signals, I don’t know if I’d be able to listen to it,” said Jordan Wiesner, a second-year in industrial engineering. “I think it’s a good idea, but I wonder if I would listen to it.”
The concept driving the broadcast includes regularly scheduled student disc jockeys as well as special events and performances from live bands.
“The perfect goal would be to play what we can’t get from other stations already,” Meil said.
AROUSE has garnered the support of several on-campus organizations, including the Music and Entertainment Industry Student Association.
“People are really excited about it,” Meil said. “Getting it to the point of broadcast is the hard work, but once it gets there, it’ll be worth it.”