FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Dec. 10, 2008
Student Media department announces broadcast changes
Texas Tech University’s Student Media department is undergoing several changes. The most significant of those changes occurred today when KTXT-FM, the university’s student-run radio station, ceased its broadcasts on 88.1 FM and ktxt.net.
Control of the radio station’s FCC license, which is maintained by the university, is being shifted from the Student Media department to Texas Tech’s other educational radio station, KOHM-FM.
No firm plans regarding the future of the 88.1 FM frequency or the related Web site have been announced.
“We agonized over this decision and looked for ways to enhance KTXT-FM’s role within the Texas Tech community, but ultimately we had to face the fact that changes needed to be made,” said Susan Peterson, director for Student Media. “We recognize this is a huge loss to those who are loyal to KTXT-FM – its listeners and its staff – but the department must grow and change in order to best serve the entire student body.”
Changes in Student Media were planned following an extensive study of departmental operations. Student input, fiscal reviews and administrative and in-house assessments factored into the decision that Student Media’s continued support of KTXT-FM was no longer feasible.
“The overwhelming financial demands of operating an FM radio station, coupled with the radical changes in the radio broadcast industry, made it clear that we need to rethink our definition of broadcast media and refocus our commitment to bolstering student learning,” Peterson said. “As they prepare to find jobs after graduation, our students depend on us to enhance the skills learned in the classroom. To meet that need, Student Media must adapt to the changes dictated by the industry.”
Peterson said the decision to relinquish the FCC license was based on numerous factors, including:
• Expenditures for KTXT-FM’s equipment and maintenance operations over the past four years, on average, have consumed more than 41 percent of Student Media’s financial resources. During that same time period, the station has generated less than one-quarter of 1 percent of the department’s revenues.
• Shifts in broadcast media in recent years have allowed for fewer jobs in radio broadcasting and more opportunities in new media: Webcasting, podcasting and video. This has prompted changes within Student Media, which is dedicated to promoting student learning experiences through practical applications.
Tech’s Student Media department, which operates under the Division of Student Affairs & Enrollment Management, oversees operations for the university’s student-run publications, The Daily Toreador (both print and online editions) and La Ventana yearbook.
KTXT-FM became a licensed radio station in 1961 and for many years operated under the College of Mass Communications. The radio station has been a part of Student Media since 2001 and has no affiliation with KTXT-TV.
Media contact: Susan Peterson, Director, Student Media department