CBN History Part I: Residence Hall Studios
Prior to the existance of the Campus Broadcasting Network, there were a number of students at the University of Michigan who were interested in radio broadcasting. At the time, the University owned and operated an FM station, WUOM, also known as Michigan Radio. However, this station was not (and still is not) an outlet for students. It was up to interested students to create their own broadcasting outlet, so they formed radio clubs in the basements of their dormitories. By 1950 there were studios in East Quadrangle, South Quadrangle, and West Quadrangle.
These studios operated independantly of one another. Each one created programming for its own building, and was staffed by the people who lived there. Instead of owning and operating radio transmitters, each studio sent its signal through the electircal system in its building. This type of broadcasting is called carrier current. The dormitory studios could not be heard beyond the building they originated in.
In 1952, these independant studios decided to start working together. A switching system was developed that allowed the individual dormitories to hear and contribute to one broadcast. The Campus Broadcasting Network was born as WCBN-AM 650