Friday, December 2, 2011


December 2nd, 2011

Middletown, CT--- Wesleyan University’s non-commercial college and community radio station, 88.1FM WESU, calls on listeners to give the gift of WESU this holiday season during The Seventh Annual WESU Winter Holiday Pledge Drive. This year’s drive will kick off at 4pm December 5th and continue for 8 days through the end of live programming (3am) on Monday, December 12th.  This year WESU will conduct 2 separate 8 day pledge drives with one in the Winter and another in the Spring rather than a single 2 week winter Holiday pledge drive.

The goal for this year’s 8-day drive is to raise $10,000 in listener support to sustain operating expenses throughout the coming year. Meeting this goal, although difficult, will keep WESU on track to raise $35,000 in community support before the end of the fiscal year in July.  WESU’s General Manager Ben Michael says that, “It will be a huge challenge for our volunteer broadcasters to raise $10,000 in 8 days. However, we know listeners value the service we provide and we are counting on them to help us meet our goal so we can continue to offer the most diverse radio programming in Connecticut.”

2011 was another great year for WESU. Highlights include WESU’s rising from #3 to #2 in the Hartford Advocate Readers Poll.  In the Spring of 2011 WESU became the first radio station in Connecticut to broadcast the daily radio news magazine, Al Jazeera English. Al Jazeera English has received numerous international awards for news coverage and WESU is pleased to include it as a complement to their diverse mix of public news and Public affairs programming from NPR, Pacifica, and other independent and local sources.

In addition to these accomplishments, The Generation Public Radio Exchange (PRX) Bullying Stories Project panel has selected WESU’s Middletown Youth Radio Project’s pitch as one of its finalists in this national competition.  The Middletown Youth Radio Project (MYRP) is a program on WESU in which youth from the Middletown community create audio projects including songs and stories and play them on the air.  The committee was impressed by the creative approach to talking about bullying, and the balance of both a social structure perspective and personal stories.  As thanks for the pitch, the youth radio group will receive: an audio storytelling kit that includes a digital recorder and audio editing software, training webinars on producing, refining, and distributing stories, story advising from a professional producer, and likely inclusion in a youth radio special to be broadcast nationwide via PRX.

Financial support during this pledge drive will help ensure that WESU continues to grow and operate as a creative vehicle for partnership between the Wesleyan University community, the people of the greater Connecticut River Valley, and beyond. Donations will directly benefit WESU and help to ensure local, community-based programs and alternative news and music continue to have a home on the radio dial.

Weekdays, WESU boasts a diverse schedule offering a robust program of News and Public Affairs by day drawing from NPR, Pacifica, independent, and local sources. Week Nights and Weekends WESU broadcast a diverse range of “free form” music and creative programming that includes Jazz, Soul, Blues, Rock, Caribbean, Hip Hop, Experimental, Electronic, Gospel, Oldies, Latin music, and much more.

To show your support for WESU, please donate now at, or call 860-685-7700 during the drive 12/05-12/12 and make a pledge. Online pledges are conveniently processed immediately, prevent clerical errors, and are more eco-friendly since there is no paper involved. For more information on how you can support WESU contact Ben Michael, General Manager – 860-658-7707.

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