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    Students Start Amateur Radio Club at Scranton

    W3USR University of Scranton Amateur Radio Club, a new student organization, has been active during the fall semester by utilizing online resources.
    October 6, 2020

    By using online resources, one of The University of Scranton’s newest student organizations has been active throughout the semester.

    W3USR University of Scranton Amateur Radio Club has held weekly Zoom meetings, which have included guest speaker appearances by world leaders in amateur radio and ionospheric science. Club members have used online radio platforms, such as kiwisdr.com and Echolink, to remotely access shortwave listening facilities around the globe. Through collaborations with other university amateur radio clubs, such as New Jersey Institute of Technology K2MFF, Massachusetts Institute of Technology W1MX and the Case Western Reserve University W8EDU, club members have earned new or upgraded amateur radio licenses remotely.

    According to the club’s advisor, Nathaniel Frissell, Ph.D., assistant professor of physics and electrical engineering, amateur (ham) radio is a hobby that is officially recognized by the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) as having the fundamental purpose of providing volunteer public service and emergency communications, advancing the state-of-the-art of radio technologies, expanding the pool of trained radio operators, radio technicians, and electronics experts, and enhancing international goodwill. W3USR is the official radio call sign issued to the club by the FCC.

    Student officers for W3USR Amateur Radio Club are: Veronica Romanek KD2UHN, president, a sophomore physics major from Hampton, New Jersey; Jonathan Rizzo KC3EEY, vice president, a senior electrical engineering major from Pittston Township; Thomas Baran KD2SNG, secretary, a junior neuroscience major from Blairstown, New Jersey; and Steve Holguin, treasurer, a junior computer engineering major from Whitehall.

    Last year, Dr. Frissell was awarded a $1.3 million National Science Foundation (NSF) grant that seeks to harness the power of a network of licensed amateur radio operators to better understand and measure the effects of weather in the upper levels of Earth’s atmosphere. In March of 2020, the University hosted – in a virtual format – the third annual HamSCI Workshop 2020 for amateur radio operators and professional scientists.

    University students are welcome to join W3USR Amateur Radio Club. For more information, contact the student officers or the club advisor.

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