Section: News

Kenyon celebrates alumni podcasts with a week of classes, workshops

Over the past week, Kenyon has hosted a variety of events featuring alumni with their own podcasts. Among the workshops was a podcasting masterclass organized by Sarah Heidt ’97, associate professor of English. The class was taught by a number of Heidt’s former students: Margaret Willison ’07, Kathryn VanArendonk ’07, Andrew Cunningham ’08 and Craig Getting ’08. Willison, VanArendonk and Cunningham co-host Appointment Television, a weekly podcast focused on discussing television series. In a separate podcast called Overdue, Cunningham pairs with Getting to talk about books they have been meaning to read, but haven’t yet.

The masterclass took place on Feb. 19 and saw the four podcasters speak about their experience with their shows, focusing largely on the process of starting a new podcast and the production involved.

Heidt saw the masterclass as an opportunity to bring students together over podcasting and potentially set new student-led shows into motion. Beyond forming new connections between students, Heidt values podcasts for their ability to spark discourse. “One of the questions I often get from students is, ‘Where do you find time and space for having the conversations we have in Kenyon classrooms in the real world?’” Heidt said. Heidt believes podcasts are a great space to have those conversations.

After visiting a number of classes and hosting the masterclass, the podcasters will record a combined episode of their shows on Thursday Feb. 20 at 7:00 p.m. in the Gund Gallery. The episode will feature a discussion of Nick Hornby’s novel and soon-to-be TV series, High Fidelity, in a debate about books versus television and movie adaptations. Following the recording, the four will have a Q&A session about podcasting.

Additionally, Kenyon’s American Studies program will host Kenyon alumna, Jenny Lawton ’01, today in Samuel Mather Hall at 11:10 a.m. Lawton, a senior editor at podcasting-focused media company WNYC Studios, will give a talk titled “Podcast as Memoir (and Memoir as Podcast).”

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