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Funding Snags Delay UNC-C Radio Station 

Efforts are still underway to get a UNC-Charlotte radio station up and running. A group of students known as the Campus Radio Organization (CRO), led by former UNCC student body president Gregory Hall, say they hope to be broadcasting by August or early September. Hall and other CRO members have been trying to drum up support for the station, tentatively known as WCRO "The Crow," since early this year. Although Hall says the project is moving along well, they've hit some snags, most notably in trying to generate the estimated $35,000 and $50,000 start-up costs. Despite the setbacks, Hall says they hope to ultimately raise $300,000 in donations and advertising revenue by October.

One of the most pleasant surprises for the station has been the influx of alumni donations. Hall says alumni have "jumped on board and contributed greatly." The station also began selling advertising time, but there's been little response so far. Hall credits this difficulty to the station not being on the air yet. He says he is confident that once things are up and running, there will be no problem selling ad time.

Hall adds that he's also made an effort to smooth out a bit of friction between WCRO and UNCC's Student Media, the organization that produces the UNCC Times and Sanskrit. Wayne Maikranz, director of Student Media, stated in a previous CL story that he was concerned with the lack of communication between CRO and Student Media, and the possibility that down the road the station might have to be maintained using student fees. Students had made clear in previous questionnaires that they did not favor supporting it with student fees. Maikranz declined to comment for this story.

The university's first radio station, WFAE, went on the air in 1970. It was a student-run carrier station that initially played Top 40 music six hours a day, five days a week. In 1976, that station went to FM but students continued to work there into the 1980s. WFAE moved from its campus-based studio to University Place in 1987. In the early 1990s, the UNC Charlotte Board of Trustees decided to no longer fund the radio station and the station became an independent in 1993. Plans for WCRO call for it to feature a 24-hour news, talk and music format. *

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