WXYC-FM 89.3 History


The smaller of the two radio stations based at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, WXYC signed on March 17th, 1977 from an antenna on the campus' South Water Tower. WXYC traces its history back to an AM carrier current operation broadcast to dorms on the UNC-CH campus called WCAR. In the early 1970s, plans were made to apply for an FM license for a 10,000-watt station at 89.3 FM. According to a history of WXYC on Wikipedia.com, the school administration pulled their support for the station when they realized that the signal would be heard in Raleigh and, perhaps, by the North Carolina General Assembly. The student organizers formed a non-profit organization, Student Educational Broadcasting, and finally made it to the airwaves in 1977, albeit at only 400 watts due to additional licenses filed since the then-defunct 1974 construction permit. Unlike the campus' other broadcaster, 100,000-watt NPR affiliate WUNC-FM, WXYC is student-run. WXYC made history on November 7th, 1994, when the station officially signed on their webcast, becoming the first station in the world to stream their audio on the Internet. WXYC is known for lots of independent labels and music not heard on commercial stations. The station has played a major role in developing Chapel Hill's nationally-known independent music scene. 1