On Saturday, October 22nd, Long Island University’s C.W. Post Campus celebrated the 50th Anniversary of its radio station, WCWP. The inaugural broadcast took place on October 18th, 1961 at noon by the founders of WCWP: Arthur Beltrone and Hank Neimark. On Saturday night, numerous alumni flooded the top floor of Hillwood Commons to recognize the achievement of the radio station.
For half a century, the Abrams Communications Center has been the “second home” of students at C.W. Post wanting to learn and develop skills in the broadcasting and production fields.
“It’s very family oriented…a lot of camaraderie going on at WCWP,” said Bryan Gallucci, a junior broadcasting major at C.W. Post. “I’ve dipped my feet in all aspects of radio, whether it’s calling games or doing the Sportswire. It’s been a real good experience.”
During the 50 years of WCWP, some of the biggest names in the sports, music and entertainment industries have been interviewed. Several athletes have talked to WCWP members on the radio. Just this past year, New York Knicks starting shooting guard Landry Fields could be heard over the WCWP airwaves. Other notable sports interviews include New York Jets safety Eric Smith, former NFL coaches Dennis Green and Jim Fassell, as well as ESPN analysts Patrick McEnroe and Buster Olney.
WCWP has also made its presence known in in music. Christina Kay, a 2011 C.W. Post alumna and current assistant general manager of WCWP, has had numerous stars within the music business interviewed on her shows including Jordin Sparks, Aaron Carter, Miguel, Push Play, and Blake Lewis, as well as a multitude of American Idol contestants.
“For me, the station has taught me so much about myself and provided me with a great foundation for my career,” said Kay, who has landed quite a few on-air spots on stations such as Party 105 and WALK-FM. “But, I think the thing[s] about WCWP that has touched me the most are the people and the atmosphere.”
Dr. Paul Forestell, the Provost of the C.W. Post Campus, discussed the University’s mission statement of “access and excellence” when referring to WCWP and the impact it has made throughout its 50 years. “You are the ones who have promoted access. You are the ones who have operated with excellence. You are the ones who allow us to feel pride in this place,” noted Forestell. “And, you’ve been pioneers for 50 years, and I have no doubt you’ll be pioneers for 50 more.”
WCWP/88.1 FM has had such a tremendous impact on so many people throughout the years. “To me, this is a very special night,” said senior broadcasting major Matt Soldano. “Being with so many great people and looking back on the past three or four years of my life that I’ve spent at WCWP, it’s really had such a great impact.” Soldano started out as an intern in the sports department of the radio station and is now the sports director of WCWP. “It’s really something I never imagined. I’m just grateful for all the opportunities that WCWP has given me.”
During the celebration, it was announced that the WCWP Hall of Fame was created. The first inductees are the founders of WCWP: Arthur Beltrone and Hank Neimark. Without the founders, none of the amazing things in future years could have happened. Countless lives have been affected by these men, and it is only right that they were inducted into the Hall of Fame.
“I hope that this marks the new beginning and the new era for WCWP,” said Dan Cox, WCWP’s director of broadcasting, who has been a part of the station for nearly 30 years. “All of you, please march with me into the future, and help me do what’s necessary to keep the atmosphere: giving great people a chance to do great work.”