Student Media Category
WKNC has enjoyed a noisy part of NC State’s history on campus over the years, becoming a mainstay in Southern college radio.
But for one brief summer, the station’s signal couldn’t be heard and listeners were treated only to dead air.
“Due to an electrically overloaded antenna, WKNC … has not been to able to broadcast since the early part of June,” the Technician reported.
But it was on this day in 1977 that Sam Taylor, WKNC’s station manager at the time, announced plans to replace the overworked antenna for a new $3,500 one that had increased input power. “It will be able to run at 1,000 watts as compared to the 250 watts the station ran last year,” the article stated.
And as WKNC’s new signal headed across the sky and over the airwaves, it carried with it not only the usual classical, jazz, progressive and top-40 music, but also new programming, which included a one-hour daily show that was centered around the happenings around Raleigh and the state.
It’s safe to say that almost every Wolfpacker is familiar with campus publications like the Technician or the Agromeck. But for years one of the most prominent publications on campus went unnoticed.
That was until this day in 1983, when the Technician reported that The Wataugan had been rediscovered.
The magazine served as a men’s publication and was founded in the late 1920s. According to the Technician, the magazine was based on The American Mercury, founded by H.L. Mencken and George Jean Nathan and was a humorous response to the tough economic times of the ’20s.
“Parodies began with mock Esquires and mock Times and spread into tabloid lampoons of the National Inquirers of the day,” the Technician reported. “The Technician took regular, mean drubbings.”
The magazine apparently disappeared in the late 50′s. But even 30 years after that, when it was found again, the magazine was lauded for its humor.
“Under the guise of laughter, it is said, truth will out. The Wataugan barrels into the real crisis of campus life, the actual concerns of the people here,” the Technician claimed. “Much of the magazine continues to evoke the same responses despite distance of time and tastes. What could The Wataugan be if it did not have to keep its imagination reigned up? Even more priceless.”
Rudolph “Rudy” Pate grew up on a tobacco farm in Robeson County, where he learned about the plowing, curing and harvesting of tobacco. He was active in the 4-H, serving as president of the Robeson County Council of 4-H Clubs and winning the county corn championship one year.
But as the valedictorian at Barker Ten Mile High School (so named because it sat halfway between the Barker Methodist Church and the Ten Mile Baptist Church), Pate wanted to write. He had covered the local beat for The Robesonian, the local newspaper in Lumberton, in addition to his farm duties and a part-time job at the Robeson County Cold Storage Company. Pate also knew he wanted to go to NC State, even though it didn’t have a journalism school to help him become a writer.
In the end, it didn’t matter. After graduating from NC State in 1943 with a degree in agricultural education, Pate was was able to combine his knack for storytelling with his love for NC State to become the man in charge of telling the university’s story. As the longtime head of the university’s Office of Information Services and then the university’s vice chancellor for foundations and university relations, Pate was known throughout North Carolina as the man who always had a good tale to tell about NC State and its people.
Pate, who served NC State for a total of 35 years, died Tuesday. He was 93.
“The biggest thrill in my work has been to see NCSU, in my lifetime, grow from a small land grant college to one of America’s 25 top public research universities — an amazing accomplishment,” Pate wrote after he retired from NC State in 1985.
A story in the Alumni Association’s magazine following his retirement described Pate as a “grinning Robeson County farm boy” who knew how to promote his beloved university with homespun stories. The story quoted an unnamed university benefactor talking about his experience with Pate: “I had some money in my pocket once. Got to missing it and thought someone had stolen it. Come to find out, Rudy had talked me out of it.”
But no matter how Pate was described, the story said, most people considered Pate a friend and treasured “the good humor that radiates from him like warmth from a cozy stove. And if, in the glow of a shared laugh, he begins to talk about the important contributions of North Carolina State University, most people find themselves persuaded.”
During his years as a student at NC State, Pate worked in the College News Bureau and wrote for the Technician and The Wataugan, a campus humor and literary magazine. During his senior year, Pate was editor of The Agriculturist, a magazine published by students in the School of Agriculture. He was a member of the YMCA Cabinet, the Student Government Council and Golden Chain, the university’s top honor society.
Upon graduation, Pate went to work as an agriculture teacher at his old high school. It wasn’t long, though, before he felt the pull back to NC State. Within a few months, Pate returned to work at the College News Bureau. A few years later, Pate returned home to Lumberton when The Robesonian offered him a job as city editor. Five months later, Chancellor John Harrelson traveled to Lumberton to convince Pate to come back to NC State, according to a 1952 story in The News & Observer naming Pate “Tar Heel of the Week.”
Pate would go on to serve 19 years as director of the State College News Bureau and 16 years as head of the university’s development and public relations efforts. Between those two periods, he served as associate director of the Southern Regional Education Board in Atlanta and as assistant to UNC President William Friday, a friend from their days as students at NC State.
Pate was well respected by reporters and editors throughout North Carolina, in part because of his willingness to deal with them on unfavorable stories about the university as well as those that told of the university’s accomplishments.
The “Tar Heel of the Week” story about Pate summarized his philosophy on negative stories: “The quicker you get them over with, the better. Get out all the truth as quickly as possible. That means fewer stories, and the story will die and be forgotten more quickly.”
But Pate loved to tell of the university’s many achievements, even if it required extra reading at home to make sure he understood the work being done in areas such as nuclear physics engineering. He would then write stories about NC State on his Royal typewriter (he employed the hunt-and-peck method with his two pointer fingers.).
Pate’s wife, Paige, also did her part to promote the university — even if it meant resorting to a bit of superstition. In 1967, The Raleigh Times told the story of a red-and-white herringbone skirt that she wore when NC State played Duke in football. The team won three straight years against Duke when Pate wore the lucky skirt. “I’m real happy State won Saturday, but I’m more inclined to think it was because of Earle Edwards and the boys and not my skirt,” she told the newspaper.
During his years at NC State, Pate chaired the committee that created the Watauga Medal and was a member of the committee that created the plans for creating the University of North Carolina Television Network. Private donations to the university and its foundations increased from $1.3 million a year to $6.8 million a year in 1984, according to an account at the time of his retirement.
Even in retirement, Pate continued to serve the university. He was a consultant in the construction of the Park Alumni Center, home of the Alumni Association, on Centennial Campus. His daughter, Mary Paige, and her husband, Bill Murray, are both graduates of NC State.
“NCSU provided ‘a window to the world’ for me, as a student, and opened up the doors for me,” Pate wrote upon his retirement. “With the help of many fine people (and especially Paige), I was able to walk through those doors and proceed to this point in my life. I will, therefore, always be indebted to the University for its guidance and inspiration and hope, in some minor manner, to be able to continue to assist it.”
Pate, who lived in Georgetown, S.C., is survived by his daughter, Mary Paige Murray, son-in-law, Bill Murray, of Georgetown, S.C., his granddaughter, Cameron Kelly, her husband, Chad Kelly, of Raleigh, and brother and sister-in-law, Eugene and Phyllis Pate of Lumberton, N.C.
The family will receive visitors at 1 p.m. Friday at Mitchell Funeral home, 7209 Glenwood Avenue, Raleigh. Funeral services will follow at 2 p.m. Interment will be at Raleigh Memorial Park.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to The Rudolph Pate Endowment, N.C. State Alumni Association, attn: Becky Bumgardner, Office of University Development, Campus Box 7501, Raleigh, N.C., 27695-7501 or Tidelands Hospice, 2591 N. Fraser St., Georgetown, S.C., 29440.
The February 1994 issue of NC State magazine took time to remember Roy H. Park, a 1931 graduate who was at one time recognized by Forbes‘ as one of the wealthiest people in America. Park had died in the latter part of 1993, and the magazine printed a deserving piece on him, one that illustrated the voluminous contributions Park made to NC State and to the world.
“In the depths of the NCSU Alumni Building, the biographical file on Roy H. Park sits in a large cardboard box atop a file cabinet,” the article reads. “There simply isn’t space for the file inside the cabinet. Park…has the distinction of being an NCSU alumnus whose accomplishments are too many to fit inside a drawer.”
Roy H. Park with a Technician student editor.
Originally from Dobson, N.C., Park served as editor of The Technician while at NC State. He went on to work for the N.C. Cotton Growers Association. But it was in the communications industry, where Park cemented his legacy, starting Park Communications Inc. and acquiring eight television stations, 22 radio stations and 144 publications by the time of his death.
But Park also left a lasting mark on NC State.
And it was on this day in 1977 that he was appointed to the university’s Board of Trustees by Gov. Jim Hunt. He remained active in the Alumni Association throughout his life. And today, the Dorothy and Roy Park Alumni Center celebrates his legacy, as do the Park Scholarships, awarded every year to a group of exceptional students. To date, fourteen classes of Park Scholars have come through NC State.
A cover of a book written by hoaxter Alan Abel. On it, you can see SINA's solution to world's problems -- a clothed horse.
A story that appeared in The Technician early in March 1963 had all the makings to launch a protest on campus. It spelled out one man’s indignation at an ill he viewed as so perilous to society, he was willing to dedicate the next 10 years of his life and his $400,000 inheritance from his father to remedy it.
As president of the Society for Indecency to Naked Animals, G. Clifford Prout saw it as his duty to travel the country and clothe every animal, whose birthday suits he saw as leading to the moral decay of the country. The Technician spelled out SINA’s contention “that the immorality of America is caused by the slight skads [sic] of little naked animals running around, flaunting their ‘vital parts.’” So Prout decided to start a chapter of SINA on many college campuses, including NC State, to carry out his charge.
“Be it resolved,” the SINA constitution read, according to The Technician, “that the members of SINA shall devote their time and energy to clothe all naked animals that appear in public, namely horses, cows, dogs, and cats, including any animal that stands higher than four inches and is longer than six inches.”
Prout also proposed a march in Washington, D.C., to protest then-first lady Jackie Kennedy and her daughter, Caroline, riding nude horses. And he offered a contest that called for each participants to write an essay of between 100 and 10,000 words addressing the theme, “Why I Choose to Be a Decent Person.”
But on this day 50 years ago, The Technician admitted that it (like students at several other universities) had been pranked and that SINA and Prout were hoaxes thought up by American prankster Alan Abel. And it turns out that Prout, himself, was played in public appearances by none other than comedy writer, Saturday Night Live alumnus and screenwriter of The Graduate Buck Henry.
“Well it finally happened,” The Technician reported on this day in 1963. “THE TECHNICIAN was played for a fool. …We think it’s a shame. We can’t help but wonder how our cows would look in petticoats.”
“College life without its journal is blank.” So went part of the announcement in the first issue of the Technician, NC State’s first student newspaper, on this day in 1920. “Smoothly and with never a jerk or a splash, but with an unnerving quiet movement, a strange ship casts off and her voyage has begun.”
The first issue was but four pages, no pictures, and a total of three ads. The news? “The State College is Meeting Its Demands,” read the front-page headline. The story beneath recited increasing enrollment figures and listed a variety of new projects to serve those students, including a new dissecting laboratory for the Veterinary Department and two new farm cottages under construction.
An item on the inside pages reported a fire at Watauga Hall that caused $1,000 worth of damage and resulted in firemen chopping on the floor, “gradually lessening the small chance of any return of our breakage fee.” Another article previewed a meeting of the Electrical Engineering Society that was scheduled to include “stunts” such as “frying eggs over a platter of ice.”
The paper started out as semi-monthly and replaced a short-lived monthly magazine called The Red & White that folded in 1917. By 1922, the student newspaper went weekly. Today, the Technician is published five days a week.
The 1920 Agromeck applauded the new student publication. “Hail! A real college news. And well done, brave and faithful class of ’20….Just what we’ve been looking for through the last four long dreary years.”
—Sylvia Adcock ’81
It looked like an announcement for a beauty contest — readers of The Technician were invited to select “the most beautiful Raleigh girl” and “most handsome State College student” — but the contest was apparently a way for the student newspaper to sell papers.
The contest got underway on this day in 1924. The rules, announced in an earlier issue of the paper, went like this: For the next month two coupons would appear in each copy of the paper. Readers could fill out the coupons — one was marked for male entries and one for female — to vote for whomever they pleased. Each coupon was worth 10 votes.
But participants could also buy votes. A $2 annual subscription to The Technician would give the new subscriber a coupon worth 100 votes. (For context on the value of $2, the contest was announced opposite an ad from Belk’s for “College Men’s Hats” that started at $1.95.) And readers could buy extra copies of The Technician for 10 cents a copy to get more coupons, allowing them to cast more votes for the guy or gal of their choice.
As the contest went on, the paper printed the number of votes for each contestant. “If some other fellow’s girl gets ahead, it just shows that fellow is working harder…Do not stop sending in the votes,” the paper said.
On April 4, the winner was announced. Beating out a slew of contestants from St. Mary’s, Peace and Meredith was Miss Emily Jones, who worked at the State College post office. Miss Jones was described as “an attractive little blonde’’ with eyes that were “ocean-blue wells of sympathy and understanding.’’ She was “a little girl who has smiled her way into the hearts of every State College man through the bars of the General Delivery Window down at the State College P.O.,’’ and always had encouraging words to students who didn’t get the mail they were looking for.
Votes came in not just from students, the paper said, but also from alumni, giving Jones more than 14,000 votes (the runner-up only got 2,230). A shorter story mentioned the most handsome student, C.E. Vick, and said he had been “beset with offers to appear in ads for facial beautifiers.”
The stories didn’t say how many subscriptions or additional single copies the paper sold. But it looks like the additional revenue may have been needed — an ad in the April 4 issue opposite the contest announcement implored subscribers to pay their bills: “The printer must be paid. A little cooperation is all we ask.”
Today the Technician is distributed free and is supported by advertising revenue and student fees.
—Sylvia Adcock ’81
NC State has long been heavy on science, mathematics and technology. But even scientists need a creative outlet, right?
On this day in 1964, the inaugural issue of Windhover was released to address such concerns. Windhover is NC State’s annual literary and visual magazine. The most recent issue was released last month.
The Windhover was not published from 1970-73, according to the journal’s website. A creative writing class at NC State published three issues of The Whole Thing, a similar literary journal, in 1974.
In 2001, NC State magazine wrote about Windhover and its success in collegiate press contests.
“There are always two ways to read something, and Windhover encourages the average reader to go beyond surface value,” said Emily Townley, who was then the editor of Windhover.
“A lot of times (at a science and technology university), we want to quantify everything, and we appreciate only the empirical data that come our way. But it’s really important for us to stretch our minds and work on pursuing other avenues of thought.”
Feeling creative? Looking for an opportunity to unleash the poet hidden inside you? Willing to share your artistic impulses?
Windhover, the literary and arts magazine at NC State, is reaching out to alumni to ask them to submit their creative work. Yes, they are still looking for work by students, but the editors want the magazine to reflect the creativity of the larger NC State community.
Almost any kind of creative work is welcome. “If it’s creative, and original, and your work, we’d love to see it,” the editors said in a request for submissions. The list of what they’re interested in includes architecture, digital media, painting, poetry, photography, prose and sculpture.
The deadline for submissions is Dec. 5 (although there is a “hard” deadline of Dec. 20) to be included in the 2012 edition. Submissions can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information, visit the Windhover website.
Alumni are also invited to participate in Windhover’s 5th Annual Open Mic Night on Nov. 18 in Caldwell Lounge.
(Image courtesy of NC State Student Media)
Here’s a reason to tune in to 88.1 FM on your radio. The Independent Weekly has named WKNC, NC State’s student radio station, the best college radio station in the Triangle. WKNC was also a finalist in the category of non-profit radio.
The students who run WKNC are passionate about the station, said Bradley Wilson, coordinator of student media advising. Programming ranges from indie rock during the day to specialty shows including “All Things Acappella,” “Chainsaw Rock” and “Shut the Punk Up.”
The station runs 24 hours a day, seven days a week, even during the summer months when students all but disappear from campus. About 150 students work at WKNC, and the jobs are so popular there’s a waiting list. Perhaps not surprisingly–considering the popularity of all-nighters among the college-aged–the most sought-after shift is 3 a.m.
Today, WKNC broadcasts at 25,000 watts and can reach 1.1 million listeners in central North Carolina. That’s up from 10 years ago, when the station was at 10,000 watts.
Check out what else the station is doing at http://wknc.org/.