Station managers submit proposal
In accordance with the original plan designating how the $9.5 million from the sale of the KTRU tower will be allocated, the station is on track to receive $1 million.
KTRU hopes to use the money to help them better connect with both Rice students and the Houston community.
In the original plan for how to use the money from the sale of the transmitter, the administration stipulated that KTRU could receive up to $1 million if the station demonstrated how they would use it. The amount designated for KTRU is separate from the $6 million for which the ALFA committee has created recommendations.
Station Managers Joey Yang and Kevin Bush wrote a proposal detailing how they could use the money.
"We felt it [the proposal] was very well presented and strong proposal with a clear vision," Leebron said.
The official decision to give KTRU the entirety of the $1 million will not be concrete until September, when the Board of Trustees votes on it. However, Leebron said he believes that it is likely KTRU will receive all or close to all of it.
"Our plan with the proposal is to become more vibrant and engaged with Rice and Houston and to remain a relevant presence post-FM," Bush said.
The station would like to use the funds to renovate their studio, host a fall show as well as the one in the spring, and an endowment, Yang said. They also are looking into ways of getting back on FM, Bush said.
As their biggest expense, Yang said in the proposal they asked that a large portion of money go toward funding concerts, specifically for the annual KTRU Outdoor show.
"This spring's show was the most successful we have had in recent memory and we want to keep doing that every year," Yang said. "We would like to be known for putting on good shows."
KTRU would like to have more nationally famous headliners at their Outdoor Show, Bush said.
Also, with a larger studio, Rice student bands and local bands could come perform on location. This could help expand their Battle of the Bands event since the competition currently requires bands to submit a previously made demo. However, many bands cannot participate because they have no demo. A studio space would allow them to perform live, Yang said.
Though both Yang and Bush said the station is looking to promote alternative broadcasting methods besides their HD channel, such as through online streaming and their iPhone app, they still feel it is harder to reach listeners than through the FM station.
"FM attracted people to our station, reaching to a significant part of our core audience," Yang said. "HD is not widely adopted enough yet."
However, Leebron said he hopes the station can really put the new types of broadcasting technology to use.
"We would like them to be able to attain a higher level of technical excellence than in the past," Leebron.
Bush said he is glad the administration is willing to allocate resources to help KTRU.
"I am pleased that the [administration] is committed to making sure KTRU survives [the loss of the tower]," Bush said. "We ran into a lot of conflict during the sale but we seem to be pretty much on same page about the vision for KTRU and I am really pleased about that."
Though it has its downsides, Yang said he feels there is a lot of potential in HD radio and is excited about everything KTRU can do.
"Money alone isn't gonna save KTRU but it helps us to accomplish some of our goals for the station. It's a means to an end that makes KTRU more relevant and engaged," Bush said.
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