KUMM’s roots can be traced to a student radio club, which produced a weekly program on KMRS in the late 60s. KUMM itself went on the air from Pine Hall in September of 1972 with a mighty ten-watt output. The station has grown significantly since then. In the early 1980s, KUMM increased its wattage to 225 watts of broadcasting power, and upgraded to stereo. Also during that time, we moved out broadcasting headquarters from Pine Hall to our current studios in the Student Center.
With the completion of the Tower Project, our antenna has moved from its previous location on the top of Briggs Library to the top of the water tower. Our broadcasting power has been licensed to increase to 500 watts. The combination of better placement and increased signal strength ensures that KUMM’s frequency reaches all locations within Morris and in a 15-mile radius beyond the city limits to outlying towns such as Cyrus and Starbuck.
The Alternative Format
KUMM is an alternative format station. Alternative in this case refers less to the specific genre than to an alternative to the music and limited variety of programming provided by commercial radio.
All of the music played on KUMM is hand-picked by student and community DJs. In the interest of diversity of programming, we give DJs considerable freedom in the music that they choose to air on their shows. However, we do have two important rules that apply to all shows. Our two rules are no top 40 in the past 10 years and 2 new songs every hour. These rules are meant to ensure that the programming offered by KUMM consistently provides the quality, current, alternative music we have always offered.
Roles We Play
KUMM entertains our listening audience with programming not otherwise available in West Central Minnesota’s radio market.
KUMM informs our listeners about relevant state, national, and international news through the Associated Press. Our in-house news department reports on local and campus issues. We also keep our audience up to date with weather reports and music news.
KUMM educates our staff with hands-on experience in broadcasting, public speaking, and leadership. Many former KUMM staffers have found careers in radio and television.
KUMM involves more students every week than any other UMM student group. Unlike many college radio stations, KUMM is completely student run and student input is actively sought at every phase of operation.