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As Told By: WVUM Wins Woodie

By Kathleen Elise posted Mar 08, 2011 at 04:10 PM

We were told to expect a call at 2pm. Yes or no. Amber, our illustrious general
manager, sent out a mass email inviting everyone on staff to gather in the studio for
the news. Between 20 and 50 people (I’m an English major; someone else can do the
math) were crammed into the studio and leaking into the hallway.

More after the jump. Pictures now.

It was hot and I was sweating, probably due more to nerves than to the disproportionate amount of
body heat in the room. A camerawoman from UMTV was there to film the results. I
asked her not to air the footage if we lost. She assured me even if the news was bad,
it would go on Newsvision. I was not amused.

Nicolette was the DJ on air, and she graciously threw on some Miami Horror to
distract us. There were some awkward dance moves, jokes for comic relief, and a
lot of staring at the request line. (In radio, there are no ring tones – you can deduce
why.) I was glaring at the phone. When we did get a call, it was some schmo asking
about…well, who cares what it was about? He wasn’t from MTV, and Amber told him
as much. (Nicely. Kind of.)

As the minutes ticked past two, we got more and more antsy. Then, suddenly, one
DJ, Ashley, burst into the studio.

“They’re outside. They’re outside with the trophy.”

Wait, what? No. No, no, no. She’s lying.



Most of us just stood there dumbfounded because a) we didn’t believe Ashley, and
b) we couldn’t believe we had actually won. A few people trepidatiously followed
her outside, and those of us remaining soon heard screams. “Go, go, go!” Soon all of
executive board and half of staff were outside.

We won!

High fives, hugs, pats of the back, and lots and lots of screaming and clapping
ensued. I was shaking, and Laura (of Miami) later admitted to tearing up a bit. Two
camerawomen and a VJ holding the biggest, most beautiful woodie any of us has
ever seen stood in the middle of the crowd.

We won!

Chaos followed. Interviews, shouts of disbelief, claims of unending confidence in our
work at the station took up the next hour, at least. It’s a bit of a blur, but Facebook
photos and videos attest to the bottom line:

We won!


And we couldn’t be prouder of ourselves, of our listeners, or of the station. The DJs,
sportscasters, newscasters, and staff members form the substance of VUM. They
provide individuality, attitude, and quality. The executive board is the backbone. Like
the other WVUMers, we live and breath the station, doing what is essentially a full
time job while maintaining grades and our actual paying jobs. If you question our
dedication, just take as an example that I spent Saturday and Sunday night at the
VUM office – and I’m not even the most hardworking staff member here.

The Woodie Award for Best College Radio Station in the Nation is not about mtvU.
It is not about underwriting. It is not even about being the best. I can only speak for
myself, but I think it is about pride: pride in our efforts, pride in our station, pride in
the programming, and pride in Miami. The award is not WVUM’s alone. It belongs to
every high school kid who turns to 90.5 FM in protest of commercial radio; to every
parent who took time out of the day to vote for his kid’s radio station; to everyone
who has left Miami and streams us live from Ohio or New York or Prague. So I say,
again and with enthusiasm:

We won!

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WVUM, Inc., the licensee of station WVUM-FM, is operated as a non-commercial educational radio station at the University of Miami. The unit has no full-time employees and is not required to have an EEO recruitment program due to its size.