Nestled in the left wing on the main floor of Owen D. Young Library, St. Lawrence’s new podcasting studio is a space intentionally designed with collaboration and creativity in mind.
The studio is now home to industry-standard microphones and computers as well as a brand-new audio mixer, thanks to a generous grant from the Gladys Brooks Foundation.
This technology is especially suited to support the new digital media and film major. Established in 2022, this major empowers students to think critically and creatively about the media they consume and the content that captivates them.
Faculty members within the digital media and film program say students have already begun developing the hands-on skills needed to make an impact in the always evolving media industry. Liz Regosin, Charles A. Dana Professor of History, taught Podcasting History in the studio, where her students learned the ropes of audio production.
“My students explored the records of Isaac T. Hopper, Quaker abolitionist and prison reformer, who was the chairman of the Committee on Discharged Convicts for a prison reform organization. These records detail Hopper’s work with people released from prison in New York City from 1845 to 1852. The students are using podcasting as their means of telling stories from Hopper’s account. Ultimately, we explored podcasting as a means of conveying the history of mid-19th century incarceration and prison reform to a general audience.”
"My students absolutely love being in the studio. They are gaining technical knowledge about podcasting as well as gaining confidence in their storytelling abilities." — Liz Regosin, Charles A. Dana Professor of History
Regosin adds that she and her students use the studio regularly for workshops, making mini-podcasts, and for the course’s final projects.
“My students absolutely love being in the studio,” she says. “They are gaining technical knowledge about podcasting as well as gaining confidence in their storytelling abilities. More importantly, perhaps, is that they are finding their ’voice’ — literally and figuratively.”
Daniel Greene ’23, a history major from Waterbury, Vermont, was one of the students enrolled in Regosin’s Podcasting History course. He says that the opportunity to take a class to learn more about the popular digital medium was one he couldn’t pass up. In addition to gaining technical recording and production skills, Daniel discovered a rewarding new way to interact with class material.
“In history, you write a lot of papers, and it becomes repetitive. In this course, we substituted writing for speaking and it was a breath of fresh air,” he says. “It was so much more engaging to talk as a group about our readings and research. We got to listen to each other and share our thoughts. I looked forward to going to class every day, and the assignments were more fun than they were work.”
Equipped with a new skillset, Daniel believes all students should take advantage of opportunities to learn in St. Lawrence’s new podcasting studio.
“The programs and equipment we worked with in class can be used for a variety of projects and jobs, and having a baseline understanding of how they work is important,” he says. “Any class that allows you to expand skills that you can use in the real-world is valuable because it inspires you to continue learning.”
“Any class that allows you to expand skills that you can use in the real-world is valuable because it inspires you to continue learning.” — Daniel Greene '23
John Collins, Professor and Chair of Global Studies, taught a course titled Blogging the Globe: News Analysis and Investigative Journalism. Like Regosin, Collins asked his students to collaborate in groups on original podcasts. Their work addressed topics such as the impact of the pandemic on campus culture, growing up queer in the North Country, and town-gown relations in Canton.
Collins sees the potential of podcasting as a medium to enhance student understanding and engagement and is excited to continue using the space as a classroom.
“I am thrilled that we’re able to offer students the opportunity to learn and create in such a welcoming and user-friendly studio space.”