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Station History

UC TV 19

Throughout its long and prestigious history, The University of the Cumberlands has been instrumental creating new and exciting opportunities for its students.

1979-1983

  • Local Access Cable Television production begins with TV 3 in Williamsburg, Kentucky.
  • Mr. Bill Neighbort (business manager) and Mr. Shelby Mays (technical director) become the driving forces behind TV 3.
  • Bill Bryant is hired by Mays and Neighbort as the first TV-3 anchor to deliver local news to Williamsburg each weekday night. Viewer response throughout the small mountain community was excellent. Soon the staff was able to bring in notable political figures as weekly guests, which helped ratings. One of the highlights of the first year was the station’s coverage of the 1979 Kentucky governor’s race which featured several interviews with candidates and live coverage of election returns in November.
  • The station facilities for editing and tape replays are located on King Mountain near Williamsburg. The only equipment owned by the station are a black and white television set and an old Beta VCR. While it is located on the mountain, TV-3 records and plays back programs on a reel to reel system.
  • As TV 3′s popularity increased, the location of the facility became a significant problem. In the winter months, snow would often prevent anyone from traveling on the treacherous roadways leading to the top of King Mountain. Mays, Neighbort, Cumberland College, and the local cable company join forces to devise a plan to bring the station off the mountain.
  • TV-3 relocated its studios to the corner Plaza in downtown Williamsburg. Mays and Neighbort begin searching for sponsors who would advertise their businesses on television. One of the first large purchases made by the station was an advertising device which rotated 3×5 note cards in front of a camera, displaying the name of a sponsor. Much of the other equipment used by the station was donated by the local cable company.
  • Programming began to flourish as the station grew. Approximately 6 months after TV-3 began airing Cumberland basketball games, they added local church services from Main Street Baptist and First Baptist in Williamsburg. The churches take turns airing live broadcasts on Sunday morning, while the other church service is aired later in the day on a delayed basis, a schedule which has been maintained to this day. Other programs included local high school football games, and a newscast.

1988 

  • TV-3 is sold to a local Williamsburg radio station, WEZJ.

1989

  • Cumberland College buys TV-3. The City of Williamsburg donates the local, vacant train depot to the college and the studios are moved there.
  • The first station manager after Cumberland purchased TV-3 was Mr. Sam Magill. Magill had approximately 20 years of experience in television, and was a former employee of WBIR in Knoxville, Tennessee. He was described by most as “the man who did everything.” Mr. Magill was also famous for being especially concerned about student involvement with the station.
  • Jeff Meadors, Cumberland College’s current director of Video Production, joins the Cumberland College family as a student in 1990 and is assigned to be a work study at TV-3. Jeff returned to the college in 2001 as the Director of Video Production, he resumed his participation with the station as a volunteer.
  • Programming begins to evolve as students begin producing their own programs, with the consent of the station manager.

1999

  • Deborah Adkins joins the Cumberland College faculty and becomes general manager of TV-3.

2001

  • TV-3 is changed to Channel 19. The studios also move from the train depot, where productions of newscasts would often be interrupted by passing trains, to the new Grace Crumb Rollins Fine Arts building.
  • Day to day operation of the station is undertaken by the newly formed target="_blank">Communication and Theatre Arts Department.

2002

  • Station Manager Deborah Adkins leaves Cumberland College to work at WVLT in Knoxville.
  • General Manager John Williams joins the faculty on July 1, 2002.

2007

  • Tabitha Charles joins CCTV-19 as the Assistant Station Manager in January 2007.
  • Station General Manager John Williams leaves University of the Cumberlands at the end of May 2007. Ms. Charles serves as acting General Manager from June 1 to August 18, 2007. She leaves University of the Cumberlands at the end of August.
  • Current General Manager Tanna Orgeron joined the Patriot Family on Aug.18, 2007. He can be reached at tanna.orgeron@ucumberlands.edu.
  • The TV station title is changed from the old Cumberland College name (CCTV-19) to the name of the University of the Cumberlands (UCTV-19).

UCTV-19 continues to grow and evolve today, just as it did when it first began to blossom in 1980. Dedicated students and a fine staff help to make the television station one of the most successful, unique programs on the campus here at the University of the Cumberlands.

 

Station History researched by Trevor Grigsby (03)
Edited by Cana L. Stevenson (07)

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