WYUR, YU’s Student-Run Radio Station, Restarts as Podcast Recording Studio
WYUR, a student-run Yeshiva University radio station that had been defunct since 2019, restarted this November in the form of a podcast recording studio.
The effort to restart WYUR has primarily been the project of Yitzhak Graff (YC ‘24) who, with the approval of Yeshiva Student Union (YSU) and Stern College for Women Student Council (SCWSC), two undergraduate student councils, along with some assistance from Office of Student Life (OSL) Director Jonathan Schwab towards locating necessary room keys, has restarted the platform, gaining access to the WYUR studio and its equipment on the third floor of Schottenstein.
Since restarting WYUR, Graff has been recording podcasts using its equipment, purchased when the station was last active in Spring 2019. WYUR’s podcasts are being hosted through Anchor, and are available on Spotify. Graff hopes to expand to other listing platforms in the future.
“Audio media is an incredibly effective and useful tool for people to have access to, to expand students’ horizons beyond just written media, which is what’s available now,” Graff shared with The Commentator. “The equipment already exists in the possession of student government; I’m just organizing a way to make it usable.”
WYUR was founded in 1968, and, from nearly its inception, was available to students on both the Wilf and Beren campuses, primarily broadcasting music, but also a selection of political and comedic talk shows of interest to the student body. WYUR also broadcasted select Yeshiva University athletics games. Broadcasting ceased around the mid-late 90s when, due to age-related equipment failure, the station became unreliable. Broadcasting resumed in 2003 through internet streaming hosted on the now defunct wyur.org and wyur.net, and resumed its previous programming with the exception of athletics games, which were taken over by MacsLive. Since then, WYUR fluctuated between periods of productivity and hiatuses throughout the rest of the 2000s and 2010s, last operating in April 2019.
As of publishing, WYUR has uploaded four podcasts of various lengths on diverse topics, including a podcast exploring the history of the Schottenstein Center and an interview with Danny Kutin (YC ‘25), the head of the Band Club. Currently, only a select few people are involved in the organization, and roles and shows have yet to be ironed out.
More expansion and specialization are planned for the future. One plan is a show interviewing club leaders about their interests and plans, to be hosted by Rami Levin (SSSB ‘24), who explained the reasoning behind the idea to The Commentator.
“It's exciting to see other people excited about their clubs,” said Levin, “People are really passionate about their hobbies, and it makes for an interesting interview.”
“We hope to allow students the freedom to develop their own shows using our recording equipment,” Graff told The Commentator. “We currently have several individuals who are interested in producing shows under this model, and we intend to continue doing outreach in the spring semester.”
Graff has started a WhatsApp chat to raise awareness about WYUR to students, has advertised it at the club fair, through posters and through email, and is planning to expand to social media in the future. He also authored a features article for the YU Observer about the history of WYUR with the aim of raising awareness of the platform’s history.
WYUR also retains access to historical equipment, reels and vinyl records, some dating as far back as its founding in 1968, some of which it has since donated to the YU Library archives.
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Photo Caption: WYUR restarted this November, since recording four podcasts.
Photo Credit: Will Francis/Unsplash