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Technicians Maintain Sky—High Tower

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By Dan Powers

Technically Speaking . . .

Students working of the old Channel 9 transmitter. From left, Jim Contantine, Jim Steendahl, Jerry Croslin, Ron Blassnig.—Photo by Alvin Thorknlonn.
Students working of the old Channel 9 transmitter. From left, Jim Contantine, Jim Steendahl, Jerry Croslin, Ron Blassnig.—Photo by Alvin Thorknlonn.
Emilio Chavez | The Seattle Collegian

Seattle Community College reaches to the sky via a 590-foot tower atop Capitol Hill. A 25,000-
watt TV transmitter at the base of the tower is maintained by the College.

The more advanced students who have passed the federal requirements for a radio operator, are
assigned to the Channel 9 transmitter at 18th Street and East Madison, or the studios of Channel
9 on the University of Washington campus.

The students who are not qualified to work on “on the air” equipment are assigned projects with the old transmitter located in room N-315. The TV tower on the roof of the North Building is not in use at present.

Channel 9 Transmitter Antenna
Emilio Chavez | The Seattle Collegian A worm’s eye view of the new Channel 9 tower. Photo by Alvin Thorkelson.

The class instructor, Nick Foster, said the communications class started with the “growing need
for radio operators and technicians” within the broadcast and mobile communication field. ‘Employers recognize the value of these actual live training conditions within this school and as a result, demand for these trained people has always been quite good,” Foster said.

The class consists of students ranging in age from 18 to 85. For most of these students training begins at the Holgate branch of the College where they spend at least a year in basic electronics theory.

Recently the decision was made to include within the communications area training for the marine radio officer, who is a seagoing radio operator. This need has developed mainly because of the Viet Namese situation, and a growing number of U. S. flag vessels going into service. Need for skilled operators in this field is acute at present.

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