Episode 11 – “Puzzle Child Podcast” by Belle Raim and Becky Marder

How do you teach a child to read? Not a generic child, but a specific child with specific challenges. Belle Raim and Becky Marder are students in the reading education Master’s program at Vanderbilt University’s Peabody College of Education and Human Development. As part of the program, each of them spent an academic year working with a student whose literacy behaviors were seen as a puzzle to their classroom teacher. In the fall they assessed their students to determine literacy strengths and areas for improvement, and in the spring they implemented a targeted instructional plan with the classroom teacher. And at the end of this “Puzzle Child Project,” they were asked by their instructor, Justine Bruyère, to reflect on the entire process in an audio project for Justine’s course, “Literacy for Diverse and Special Needs Learners.”

On this episode of VandyVox, we’re sharing an excerpt from Belle and Becky’s “Puzzle Child Podcast.” The two students produced the audio by developing questions they wanted to address, then answering those questions and discussing their puzzle children on tape. The audio assignment helped them synthesize what they had learned over the course of their yearlong projects, and helped them to think critically about their teaching philosophies and practices.

To listen to the full “Puzzle Child Podcast,” visit Literacy Listening, a website set up by Justine Bruyère, who taught Belle and Becky last spring. Justine likes to have her students reflect on their literacy education work through audio. Self-reflection assignments can be valuable learning experiences for students. Framing such an assignment as a podcast is likely to help students engage more deeply in the reflection process, as they prepare for their recording session and work together to produce a reflection that’s meaningful and interesting.

Episode 10 – Out Loud by Greg Thompson

On this episode of VandyVox, we’re excited to share another podcast produced by a Vanderbilt student. Out Loud: LGBT Stories of Faith features interviews with Vanderbilt students about their experiences coming out to their church communities. The podcast, now in its second season, is the creation of Greg Thompson, a recent graduate of the Master of Theological Studies program at the Vanderbilt Divinity School. Out Loud started in a course Greg took on creativity and theology, but the podcast became an integral part of his Master’s thesis about honoring LGBT spirituality through digital storytelling.

When we asked Greg to select an episode of Out Loud to feature here on VandyVox, he said he really loved the interview he did with Vanderbilt Divinity School alumnus Kelsey Davis. Her approach to spirituality is centered on the statement “Belonging comes before belief.” It’s a statement that has sparked conversations for Kelsey and for Greg in their religious circles, as you’ll hear in our excerpt of Episode 103 of Out Loud: LGBT Stories of Faith.

You can listen to the full conversation on Greg’s website, outloudstories.com, or by searching for “Out Loud LGBT” in your favorite podcast app. Greg recently launched season 2 of Out Loud, featuring more thoughtful interviews exploring the intersection of faith, gender, and sexuality. Thanks to Greg Thompson for sharing his work here on VandyVox.

Episode 9 – Wandering Off by Jacqueline Grogan

Welcome to the second season of VandyVox! We’re excited to share more creative and effective student-produced audio from around campus. This season, in addition to audio pieces produced by students for course assignments at Vanderbilt, we’re also featuring episode from not one, but four podcasts produced by Vanderbilt students apart from any particular course. With podcasting growing rapidly, Vanderbilt students are using the medium to tell stories and connect with audiences.

One such student is Jacqueline Grogan. Jacqueline is the host of Wandering Off, the Vanderbilt University Career Center professional development podcast. Through interviews with Vanderbilt faculty, staff, students, and alumni, Jacqueline explores the many unexpected turns people take along their paths from college to career. Jacqueline has talked to an English major turned photographer, an engineering science major who interned for a US senator, and a Career Center coach about imposter syndrome in the workplace.

On this episode of VandyVox, we’re featuring Episode 15 of Wandering Off, an interview with Vanderbilt alumnus Wes Matelich, a philosophy major turned CPA turned cannabis entrepreneur. Jacqueline was a bit hesitant about the episode, which discusses an industry that’s currently illegal in the state of Tennessee. But, as you’ll hear, Wes Matelich’s path from college to career is really interesting, and Jacqueline felt it would be encouraging to hear for students unsure about their post-college plans.

Wandering Off was started two years ago by undergraduate student Briana Francois. The Career Center was looking for a friendly, approachable way to connect with students at Vanderbilt, and Briana, a student work at the center, proposed a podcast. The Career Center liked the idea, so Briana worked with Vanderbilt Student Media, who co-produce VandyVox, to launch Wandering Off. Briana produced 11 episodes before graduating, at which point Jacqueline Grogan took over as host for a second season. Both hosts have worked hard and collaborated well, resulting in a very professional sounding podcast.

For more episodes of Wandering Off, listen on iTunes or SoundCloud. See also Jacqueline’s 2018 TEDxVandy talk.