|Broadcast area||Portland State University campus|
|Slogan||Portland's College Radio|
|First air date||October 1994|
|Callsign meaning||Portland State University|
|Owner||Portland State University|
KPSU is one of a few Community radio stations in the United States which provides fully freeform programming. This means that the station's DJs choose all the music formats they play, without any required cuts or forced rotation. While many Community radio stations claim to feature freeform programming, KPSU is one of only approximately 6 college radio stations in the United States that is both fully free format and features no outside syndicated radio programming such as NPR or Pacifica Radio. KPSU's programming features a wide gamut of musical genres. As a college radio station, KPSU reports weekly to CMJ.
All of KPSU's paid employees are students. The on-air hosts are volunteers drawn from the university population, as well as non-student community members. KPSU derives its funding from Portland State University, local businesses, and its own annual fundraising drive.
The station promotes a variety of music concerts in the greater Portland, OR area, as well as live on-air performances from local and touring acts. As well as live internet radio, KPSU archives several weeks of programming in hour-long MP3 format.
KPSU was the vision of a student group known as the Popular Music Board in 1992. Their members included student advisor Sharon Brabanac and students Brian Korver, John Beil, Carl Bergwall, Aaron Cross, and Kirill Galetski. Together, they formed a non-funded Student Organization named “The Friends of KPSU” in 1992, with the help of student advisor Margaret Banyan. In 1993, thanks to the efforts of Brian Korver, they secured $8,000.00 in funding from the student Incidental Fee Committee at Portland State University. They used the money to hire graduate student Don Nasca to organize Project KPSU. Organizing student and faculty support; including a demonstration of hundreds of students at a University funding meeting, KPSU solidified continuing funding. Don was successful in contracting with KBPS; agreeing to share evening and weekend airtime with the Portland, OR station, owned by Portland Public Schools.
KPSU primarily relies on funding from Portland State University, but also has grown to raise funds through community underwriting and grassroots listener fundraising through events such as on-air pledge drives and live concerts.
Thousands of students and community members have been trained in all aspects of the radio business including management, production, promotions, development, programming, and on-air entertainment. KPSU remains to be the largest student organization on the campus.