Of the 30-odd cable TV stations viewed by Temple University dorm dwellers, only one is dedicated to the University community.
That channel, number 36 to be exact, is nothing more than what appears to be a blur of words, most likely announcing some obsolete or outdated message to viewers.
The organization that plans to change all this is known as the RGB Media Collective. RGB stands for Red Light, Green Light, Blue Light, paying homage to the original colors found in TV screens.
The goal of this student run organization, which was started by Professor Mike Kuetemeyer, who now serves as advisor, is to bring a TV station back to Temple.
According to Amber Grier, an executive board member of RGB, the reason that this TV station has been pursued so aggressively is because many of the other colleges in the Philadelphia area, such as Drexel and La Salle, are home to student television stations.
Another motivating factor for the creation of a Temple TV station is the experience that such an effort would offer to students in the School of Communication and Theater (SCAT).
The RGB would like to afford students the opportunity to produce and show their own television work in preparation for post-graduate careers.
The idea of a student-run TV station is certainly not new to Temple.
The University was home to a TV station in the 1980s, but the channel was shut down in 1991 following a lack of funding.
The RGB Media Collective started up in March of 2002 and is composed of an executive board of directors and enthusiastic members.
Unfortunately, the station will not be completed by the time the board members graduate from Temple.
Rather than dwelling on this factor, Jay Garrico, a member of the executive board, set his sights on the future.
“We are trying to pave the way for Temple students to have a TV station,” Garrico said.
In the mean time, the RGB is working with Temple Update, the student-made newscast produced by the Broadcast, Telecommunications and Mass Media Department.
In addition, RGB airs “Termite TV,” which are projects created by Kuetemeyer.
“Termite TV” was started in 1992 by Kuetemeyer and two other Temple graduate students and is currently aired on Drexel’s DUTV.
“Termite TV Collective is a group of media artists who collaborate together to produce experimental and documentary programs,” said Kuetemeyer.
“Over the past two years I have been showing student work from my FMA 200 Videography classes on DUTV in that timeslot. This gives Temple students the experience of broadcasting their work, paving the way for the creation of student work for Temple’s new cable channel.”
These projects are shown are on Tuesdays from 1:00pm-2:30pm, Thursdays from 2:00pm-3:00pm and on Fridays from 11:00pm-12:00pm in the SCAT student atrium.
The objective of these viewings is to raise the Temple community’s awareness of the RGB and its efforts.
According to Garrison, anyone in SCAT can join RGB.
Students who join are required to attend the RGB’s general assemblies, usually held on in the SCAT student lounge on the first floor of Annenberg Hall.
The future of the RGB seems bright, as Temple’s TV station is being built on 15th and Diamond streets. It is estimated that the project will take two years to complete.
Temple students will likely identify more with this effort than they do with the flashing events of channel 36.
“I would like to see the station cater to students. Advertising students could advertise about events coming up on campus,” said Temple sophomore Shauntay Jones.
Temple sophomore Brooke Parks would like to see more of an interactive TV station.
“I would like to see student produced shows, student talk shows about campus issues and panel discussions,” Parks said.
If all goes according to plan, Temple students should be seeing a completely new Temple station lighting up their TV sets within a few years.
Roshida Hernandez can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.