Moving out and moving on: KURE must find new home


Tanner Vieth (DeeJay Tanner), a junior in psychology, DJs during the DM Tea radio show on KURE 88.5 FM.

Morgan Kelly

Radio station KURE is being asked to move out of Friley Hall after 65 years of residence.

The Department of Residence has issued the station to move out by the summer of 2015.

KURE originally started as a residence hall-only radio station, which played music through the water pipes.

KURE now broadcasts to all of Ames, and events are open to both students and Ames community members, providing the DOR with the argument that the station is no longer suitable for a residence hall-only environment.

“In my opinion it wasn’t very deep or complicated, it was ‘this is who you are let’s find a better place for you,’” said Peter Englin, director of the DOR. “I saw a problem with this many non-residence students having access to the building on a regular basis. There is higher priority and obligation on our part to serve residence hall students with some of that space.”

Some members of KURE may have been unaware the station was being kicked out of Friley until recently because of a miscommunication between old and new members, but Englin said the station has known about it for at least three years.

“I don’t think the expectation was passed onto the new board that makes up KURE,” Englin said. “That’s what happened.”

He wouldn’t say whether or not there was a miscommunication.

“When we were first told to move out they gave us no options,” said Owen Ballard, KURE’s operations director and senior in biology. “They weren’t offering us any help, though they have since offered to assist us financially, but it was essentially up to us to figure out where to relocate.”

Since then, Hamilton Hall has been the one main contender for the new studio.

“We decided to look for places to go that would make sense and that led us to the Greenlee School of Journalism,” Ballard said. 

According to Ballard, with the potential jump to Greenlee, the KURE board hopes to bring back the news department and has already filled the news director position.

The Greenlee School faculty are scheduled to discuss the idea Dec. 5 and are ready to hear what KURE has to say before deciding if they will house the station in Hamilton.

“Throughout this whole mess of moving out of Friley, Pete [Englin] told us that we might have to downgrade, not only space-wise but programming-wise as well,” Ballard said. “However, our board discussed and decided to actually expand both, if not space-wise, definitely our programming.”

Though Melissa Sheret, DJ for KURE and senior in event management, said she prefers music programs, she said she thinks adding news to the show will bring more people to the station overall.

Caleb Hansen, another DJ for KURE and senior in biology, said adding a show in a podcast style could bring even more listeners in.

“If we have the talent here at Iowa State, it would add a lot to the show,” Hansen said.

Another potential benefit of moving out of Friley would be longer access to the building.

Hansen said getting into Friley has always been problematic and hopes the possible move to Hamilton would keep doors open longer, or DJs would be given special access.

“Some people want to do summer shows, and it’s always been impossible because no one lives here in Friley during the summer. I’m not sure, if we get into Hamilton, if they’ll give us little swipe cards to access [the building] whenever or not,” Hansen said.

As for the future of the Friley space, Englin said the DOR plans to talk to hall students and government about what they want done with the newly vacated space.

He said the space will probably end up being more study space or meeting areas.

“We are likely committing for next year to use dens for the full year. We have other commons spaces than just those dens so students would still have somewhere to go, unlike in places like Helser Hall,” he said.

The extra space would be welcomed, he said, because Friley’s dens would be unusable for a full year.

Ballard predicts the move to be ultimately successful and benefical for both Friley Hall and KURE, and his team agrees.

“Moving is annoying,” Hansen said. “But once we get it done we will be better for it.”