WSUP celebrates 50 years of broadcasting

Broadcasting from the tallest building in three surrounding counties, 1964 was the first year that the University of Wisconsin-Platteville’s radio station opened their airways.

Wisconsin State University-Platteville, known by their call letters WSUP, has entertained countless listeners on the air, adding live webcasting in 2006, which makes it the oldest student-run station in the state.

Now celebrating its 50th birthday, The Evolution WSUP 91FM continues to offer entertainment to the campus and community, as well as provide UW-Platteville students with various opportunities.

Fully licensed by the Federal Communications Commission, WSUP is an alternative rock station, but offers a variety of programming options to suit different tastes in a diverse university community.

“We have something for everyone, with specialty shows ranging from metal, post-hardcore, classic rock and dub step/electronic, and we’re trying to start a hip-hop show,” disc jockey for WSUP and junior building construction management major Billy “Lando” Williams said.

In addition to providing entertainment and public information, WSUP is one of 10 Wisconsin college radio stations, combining education with experience for the professional world.

“The station allows students to build their personal style and offers an opportunity to develop appeal for their audience,” professor of media studies Steve Swope said.

“Your only alternative,” as the station’s slogan reads, is more than just a catchphrase.

With the rise of syndicated radio shows and the lack of variety in mainstream music, WSUP and its student workers have a great opportunity.

“With concentration in the music marketplace, a place like WSUP can buck that trend, working change from within,” Swope said.

As radio broadcasting continues to evolve, so does The Evolution.

“Radio has seen many changes in the sophistication of the equipment, especially the digital technology,” Department Chair of media studies Arthur Ranney said.

After 50 years and many technological advances, WSUP radio continues to inspire and attract new students. The station’s specialty shows, such as “The Rusty Razorblade” and “The Heavy Metal Meltdown,” have on-air giveaways and an annual Halloween party.

“It’s our hobby. We’re all really good friends. My roommates work with me, and it’s a really good opportunity to meet people and gain experience,” junior media studies major Rachel Schneider said.

“Radio is one of the easiest things to get involved in on campus. It’s a place to hang out between classes, a great outlet and it’s always open,” Williams said.

WSUP can be found on the radio at FM 90.5 or online at WSUP.org.