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The news that keeps us Onward On!

The Carroll News

The news that keeps us Onward On!

The Carroll News

WJCU 88.7 makes history through landmark wins and smashing records

The station’s hit rap show “808s and Mixtapes” leads the way, while WJCU staff and volunteers garner recognition, inspiring JCU’s future broadcasters
Zachary Sinutko
The WJCU 88.7 team displaying their four first-place awards

With the end of the 2023-2024 award and honors season for college radio, WJCU 88.7 FM, John Carroll University’s station, earned a series of prestigious awards, solidifying its position as a powerhouse in the realm of collegiate broadcasting. Most notably, the station won the Intercollegiate Broadcasting System (IBS) media award for Best College/University Radio Station under 10,000 students.

Jasen Sokol, director of WJCU, noted that “to be named the best among all the small schools in the country is just incredible.”

“I was blown away. I know we were all blown away…it’s a huge honor. It’s humbling,” said Sokol. “Now it’s more of an overall Excellence Award in my mind. So if [the judges are] listening, they could pop in on Sinutko, or they could pop in on a DJ training, who’s cracking the mic for the first time. So it really does speak to the overall excellence that the station’s been able to achieve.”

Zachary Sinutko ‘24, the promotions director at WJCU, said, “Recognition inspires not only us but the people coming after us” as he looks forward to seeing “the amazing work that the following classes continue to do in our absence.”

When asked what sets WJCU apart from other stations, “it’s the dedication that we have seen from the students over the last four years…their hard work [and] the quality of work that they’re doing,” said Sokol. “They’re backed then by a great group of community volunteers.”

During the school year, the station is run by passionate students, but community volunteers also regularly contribute to broadcasts. Ray King, one of the station’s community volunteers, won the IBS award for Best Community Volunteer Program/Personality for his show “Rockin’ Ray’s Record Recall.”

Sinutko and Mackenzie Jackson ’25 received recognition from IBS for their work in promotions, winning the award for Best Radio Promotions Director.

“808s and Mixtapes” is WJCU’s first rap and hip-hop show in over a decade

Sinutko is also the executive producer of WJCU’s popular show “808s and Mixtapes,” which was the most-awarded program at the station this year. Members of the production team include Sinutko, Emily Davala ‘24, Moody Qotaynah ‘26 and Jayden Beddingfield ‘26. They were recognized by the Broadcast Education Association Festival of Media Art for Best On-Air Personality with an Award of Excellence and the IBS Award for Best On-Air Personality. “808s and Mixtapes” was also the winner of the Best Audio Talk/Entertainment Program (2,999 and under-enrollment) from the College Media Association Pinnacle Awards and the College Media Association Film and Audio Festival award for Best DJ.

Furthermore, Sinutko’s Lily Jade interview received the International Student Broadcasting Championship award for Best Interview.

“With 17 national and international award nominations, a Guinness World Record, eight top-five placements and four first-place awards, 808s & Mixtapes is the award-winningest show in WJCU history,” said Sinutko. “It stands out due to the fact that we did something different. We did a hip-hop show on a station that has not had one in about a decade.”

Sinutko noted “Without listeners like you, none of this would be possible…Through things like our yearly radiothon fundraising efforts, you and your donations help keep us alive for another 55 years and you are truly the heart of WJCU.”

Sokol pointed out that “there’s a team of people behind that one person you hear on the radio.”

Looking forward, Sokol remarked, “I feel good about the future. But, you know, it’s something that you can’t just take for granted. You’re always one year away from being back into uh-oh mode.”

Sokol was also the recipient of the College Media Association (CMA) Emerging Adviser Award, which is given to a CMA member with less than five years of experience in advising and who has distinguished service in a particular area.

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    Thomas BurkeMar 25, 2024 at 10:09 am

    Congratulations, on the recognition of your dedication and hard work!