|City of license||New Brunswick, New Jersey|
|Slogan||New Brunswick, New Jersey, New Music
Rutgers' Original Alternative
|Frequency||88.7 FM (MHz)|
|First air date||January 27, 1974|
|Format||Non-commercial campus radio|
|Callsign meaning||Rutgers the State University|
WRSU-FM is a noncommercial college radio station serving Rutgers University, broadcasting at 88.7 MHz FM from New Brunswick, New Jersey. It is a faculty-run public radio station that has a variety of shows hosted by students and community members. Its main offices are located on the College Avenue Campus.
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (June 2008)|
WRSU first went on the air on April 26, 1948. In its earliest inception, WRSU was an AM Carrier Current Station that broadcast from the basements of several Rutgers dormitory buildings. During this period, WRSU ran on the 630 AM band. The station's first General Manager and Founder was Charles Brookwell, Class of '49.
Beginning in the 1950s, the station changed frequencies and changed operating facilities, eventually leaving WRSU on the 680 AM band, with offices in the attic of a building located at 12 College Avenue; the carrier current transmitters remained in the dormitory basements. The current offices of the station began to be utilized in 1971, and are located at 126 College Avenue located in the Rutgers Student Center.
WRSU-AM ceased operation in 1976, two years after the inception of WRSU-FM
WRSU-FM went on the air at 88.7 megahertz with 1365 watts ERP on January 27, 1974. During the 50s and 60s, the station played current popular music, but starting in the 70s, the station underwent a conscious effort to introduce album oriented progressive/free form movement with a heavy concentration on Community Affairs. The first song ever played was Crosby, Stills, and Nash's "Suite: Judy Blue Eyes" The seventies were also a time when live interviews with singers began and ranged from the local band Holmes to Wonder Woman Linda Carter promoting her first album.
WRSU has a station playlist, but it generally consists of several hundred entire albums, and individual DJs have a large amount of control over the format of their shows. The station is strictly non-commercial, and aims for a somewhat freeform style of broadcasting.
The station is under the management of Rutgers University, and while operations are on a strictly volunteer level, and no course credit is involved, the station does seek to develop the skills of their student personnel for eventual use in the professional field.
WRSU has an effective radiated power of 1365 watts, and can be heard about 15 to 20 miles North and over 20 miles South of New Brunswick.
Funding and operations
WRSU receives funding from Rutgers University, and is a strictly non-commercial radio station. However, WRSU goes receive grants and underwriting from local businesses and record stores. Usually, this underwriting takes the form of a credit for the station at said record store in exchange for hourly notices broadcast on the station.
WRSU's programming is varied and constantly changing, with new shows being added each semester and some longtime mainstays having been on the station for several decades.
The Morning Stretch
WRSU added a new morning show titled "RU Awake" in September 2008, which airs for two hours every weekday from 8 AM to 10 AM. In 2009, the show was renamed "The Morning Stretch", a reference to a 70's morning show at WRSU. The program showcases the many departments of WRSU, featuring a wide variety of music, news updates, and sports talk. The hosts are three different members of the aforementioned departments, and rotate each day.
Music and entertainment
WRSU requires most DJs to dedicate a certain percentage of their shows to station playlists, but said playlist is considerably long and well represented by most forms and genre of music. Genres represented on WRSU include various forms of rock (such as indie and metal), electronic music, reggae, hip-hop, gospel, and Latin American music.
WRSU has a long history of sports coverage. The station broadcasts play-by-play coverage for all games, home and away, for Rutgers Football, Rutgers Men's Basketball, and Rutgers Women's Basketball. Also, selected Rutgers Baseball, Soccer, and Lacrosse games are broadcast.
Knightline has served as WRSU's men's basketball and football postgame call-in show since 1974.
The shows have featured interviews with the most important people surrounding Rutgers athletics, including top football players such as OL Anthony Davis, LB Manny Abreu, and FB Jourdon Brooks. The shows invite listeners to call in or submit their comments via AOL Instant Messenger to the username WRSUSports.
WRSU is the flagship station for Rutgers Women's Basketball. WRSU is the only radio station to broadcast each and every Rutgers Women's Basketball game.
WRSU broadcasts 15-minute "WRSU News at Ten" updates Monday-Thursday nights at 10 PM, and a 15-minute "WRSU News at Noon" update Fridays at 12 Noon. The newscasts cover events, issues, and trends happening at Rutgers, with national and local headline reports and weather forecasts.
The news department also produces KnightBeat, airing every Tuesday at 10 PM. Knight Beat is a news-talk show featuring interviews with campus organizations and leaders, discussions of the latest news headlines, and detailed profiles and discussions of Rutgers issues.
WRSU News is in the process of becoming a fully multimedia equipped operation. The department will focus not only on terrestrial radio broadcasts, but also providing special content like blogs, podcasts, print-form stories, and video. Their multimedia-based blog was launched in April, and features news and opinion on issues both at Rutgers and around the world.
The WRSU news department also provides live coverage of Rutgers events, as well as annual election coverage. In recent years WRSU has played host to both Democratic and Republican Presidential Conventions Headquarters.
WRSU provided live coverage of the 2008 Presidential election on November 4, featuring live reports from the New Jersey Democratic and Republican headquarters, analysis by Rutgers political commentators, up-to-the-minute results, and live reports from College Avenue during student celebrations.
WRSU broadcasts cultural and Community Affairs programming on Sundays from 12-9 PM. Currently, the station features programs showcasing the music and culture of Turkey, Israel, Greece, Pakistan, India, Ireland, Hungary and the African Diaspora, which is also covered on Wednesday nights followed by music and news from Jamaica. Spanish programming can be heard Thursdays 10 PM-Midnight and Fridays 6-10 PM.
On Tuesday afternoons a Community Affairs show geared towards the lesbian, gay, bi, transgender community is presented in the talk/ music show Generation Q. Human rights issues are also discussed on this program.
- Mike Emanuel, former sports reporter, now a White House Correspondent for Fox News Channel.
- Bernard Goldberg, former WRSU news director, reported for CBS News and currently reports for Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel
- Bill Newcott, '77, former WRSU news reporter, now host of AARP's Movies for Grownups radio show, heard on 400 stations and Sirius Satellite Radio.
- Matt Pinfield, former WRSU DJ and music director. He was the music director for WHTG-FM, hosted shows on MTV and VH1, was Vice President of A & R and Artist Development at Columbia Records, and currently is a DJ on WFAN-FM and Sirius Satellite Radio.
WRSU's broadcast can now be obtained through a streaming feed off of their website. This has dramatically increased the profile of all of the station's shows.
- WRSU official website
- WRSU's page on StylusCity
- WRSU News Blog
- Query the FCC's FM station database for WRSU
- Radio-Locator information on WRSU
- Query Nielsen Audio's FM station database for WRSU