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NU Channel 1 Is On the Air

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January 19, 2005
Northwestern's first television station — NU Channel 1 — launched last week with the evening broadcast of the Northwestern News Network (NNN).

Channel 1 uses Video Furnace software that enables students to watch the station through NUTV, Information Technology's system of delivering digital television to residence halls and academic buildings throughout campus.

With the new channel, students can watch student-produced programming from their desktops, just as they have already been enjoying cable stations such as CNN, C-SPAN and ESPN. NUTV is unavailable through computers off the Northwestern campus network.

Channel 1 is funded through the Division of Student Affairs. Cate Whitcomb, assistant to the vice president for student affairs, serves as the station's staff advisor.

"When you have a TV station that you are working on together, where you see your friends, it creates a real sense of community," Whitcomb said. "This will give a face and voice to Northwestern students."

According to Channel 1 officials, the station is a place for students to showcase original work and there is widespread enthusiasm at the prospect of providing greater exposure to student productions of all kinds.

Station manager Andrew Bloustein added that the overall goal of Channel 1 is to become a campus community fixture. "We want to show students' work and the variety of ideas from throughout campus," he said.

The station's broadcast schedule runs daily from 2 p.m. to 4 a.m. and includes, in addition to NNN broadcasts, existing programming courtesy of Studio 22, a non-profit, student-run production company at Northwestern. It is currently receiving proposals and material for new programs.

The University has been planning to launch a student-run television station since the Video Furnace technology was acquired. Before, NNN was available only to Evanston residents with cable television and a limited number of students who could watch live online. Also, student-produced shows were typically shown only a few times a year through outlets such as Studio 22.