Coming from a small town has defined me more than I thought it would. Although I had to be creative to have fun, being from a rural area has also afforded me more opportunities than if I would have grown up in an urban setting. Even though that did mean my idea of a ‘fun’ first date was getting Icees at Target, but I wouldn’t trade my gradeschool experience for anything else. I was able to start doing radio when I was twelve years old, I cohosted the Friday morning show on a semi-regular basis, and that resulted in getting my own weekly segment come my Freshman year of high school. By Junior year, I was hosting weekly three-hour music shows, and I became the student intern for my Senior year of high school. I returned for the summer of 2014 for a more ‘official’ internship assisting the program director, and that affirmed my professional dreams.
I was able to immerse myself in the world of public radio because I didn’t have all of the big city distractions, and the competition wasn’t too stiff for an NPR-affiliate station in Grand Rapids, Minnesota. This helped me both build up a decent portfolio, and drew me deep into the world of public radio. It’s how I found Columbia, and how I was able to secure the Presidential Scholarship, which literally afforded me the opportunity to continue my education in my art form.
As I was preparing to come to a specialized program for my higher education, I learned a lot about time management and hard work. I have a few part-time jobs, but the most important is my position as the Associate Producer for the Great Northern Radio Show. I’ve learned that this is what I want to do with my life: produce content that can be pleasing both to the ear, and to a live audience. I love making radio connections face-to-face, and I’ve been lucky enough to find that in variety shows. Maybe it’s because I was so used to seeing the same faces at Target in my small town, but there’s something so special to me about creating content for a variety show. The room for creativity is limitless, and the connection you’re able to make with people is something that is different than anything else I’ve ever experienced.