It’s Not About Popularity


My time at North Dakota State University was incredible. One of the best things I did was work at the campus radio station, KNDS. I was not the only student that benefited from the experience.

From the sounds of it, there won’t be many more to benefit from this station.

A NDSU Finance Advisory Board recently put the station on probation due to lack of significance with the students. If they do not raise their awareness in a year, they risk losing their funding.

I get the lack of popularity with students. Even during my time at NDSU, I didn’t know many other students that knew what I did with KNDS.

Of course, popularity is not the point of college organizations.

Perhaps this board needs a reminder. I’m happy to help.

Dear stuffy (most likely old and out of touch) people with a terrible sense of self-entitlement: A college organization exists for several reasons. The one I like to throw out there is the ability to be creative without the fear of repercussions.

You do something outside of the norm at your job and you could face problems if your way doesn’t work. Not the case in a college organization.

“Let’s try this. I think it would be different and I would like to see how it goes.”

We can also talk about the idea of gaining knowledge that goes beyond the classroom. Textbooks are great, even if they are too expensive, but they cannot teach what it’s like to talk into a microphone. Program a show. Make an ad.

It doesn’t matter that nobody heard it. What matters is that you did it and learned how to do it.

Isn’t college about preparing us for the real world, so to speak? How do you do that if you don’t allow a student to experience this on a smaller scale?

I get that internships exist for this purpose and they’re a great way to learn. There’s no doubt about that. It just can’t be the only thing offered to a student.

I’m passionate about this because I believe these organizations, KNDS and others, are what makes college great. It’s one of my favorite memories of college. That and writing for the Spectrum. That’s the college newspaper at NDSU.

I wouldn’t be surprised that this board starts to take a look at the popularity of this organization as well. If they’re already targeting a radio station, why not eliminate a newspaper? I mean, who actually reads newspapers anymore anyways.

And, you know what, while we’re at it, let’s look at some other unpopular organizations.

Perhaps the science department has some smaller groups that not enough people know about. Engineering having anything we can throw out?

My point being that popular or not, student run organization like KNDS should not have its future determined by a popularity contest.

Instead, it should be viewed as an opportunity for students that want to get into radio to actually be on radio. For that simple fact alone, it deserves to be a part of NDSU for years to come.