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#whatstrending: The fight to save WMUC radio

Sunday - 4/24/2011, 11:33am  ET

Saving WMUC

WTOP's Neal Augenstein and Nathan Hager discuss the efforts to save WMUC, University of Maryland, College Park's student-run radio station.

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Neal Augenstein, wtop.com
Nathan Hager, wtop.com

WASHINGTON - When a radio station is trending on Twitter we take notice. And this week a local college station has been on a lot of people's minds and keyboards.

WMUC is University of Maryland's station. Since 1937 it's been a place for students to get their first hands-on experience with radio.

Alumni include Connie Chung, not to mention several WTOP staffers.

But the free-form, student-run station is facing severe budget cuts by the Student Government Association. Station leaders say if the funding is cut by 70 percent, WMUC would be unable to to pay its most basic expenses for operating.

There's been an outpouring of support on Twitter, and a hashtag for the cause: #saveWMUC.

Nathan: "I remember my own college station. I was jazz and news director. We got to build our own playlists. It's what got me into news."

Neal: "It was a chance to learn how the equipment works, and to make mistakes that few people will here. I actually got thrown off my campus station one year for playing punk before it was on the format. The next year, when it was more acceptable I hosted a new wave and local talent show."

So what do you think? Is college radio worth saving, or it expendable? Let us know what you think in the comments section or tag your tweet with #whatstrending.

(Copyright 2011 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)