Grady M. ’21, President of the A/V Club, wanted to make a podcast to bring people together. “[Podcasting] is a great way of creating and connecting the AOS community by creating content that everyone from parents and students to teachers can listen to and enjoy.”
Mr. Seth Rowoldt, Lower School Music Teacher, (affectionately known as Mr. Row) was first approached by Grady early last year with his vision for a podcast at AOS. Interested in helping students explore digital media, Mr. Row agreed to be Grady’s staff editor and help get things off the ground.
They submitted a proposal prior to the Christmas break of 2019, and they received approval to start AOStudios shortly after their return. The duo quickly went to work, creating a small recording studio in a storage room on the third floor in the lower school building. Mr. Row offered technical assistance when needed, but he knew his only student editor would take the project and run with it.“He’s a wonder star student of the year,” Mr. Row explained. “Grady’s that kind of kid.”
AOStudios distributed new episodes to parents via email, offering three different programs: “Corona Cast”, which asked teachers how they were coping with the spring 2020 quarantine; “Sports in Motion”, which gave post-game interviews with AOS coaches; and “Trendy with Teach”, which investigated how teachers felt about the latest trends of Grady’s generation, including Tik Toks, Yeet, OK Boomer, what they all meant, and who they annoyed.
“It just caught on fire,” Mr. Row said. Even when COVID-19 forced AOS to close its campus, Grady continued the program by conducting interviews over the phone and assigning interviews to students in other grades and divisions. Grady’s project has brought connection to the AOS community in a time of crisis, but Mr. Row also sees an opportunity for the long term. He hopes to convince other A/V Club members to follow Grady’s example and explore media like music, video, and graphic media production.
Grady agrees: “The possibilities are endless with new technologies. There are so many amazing things that could allow students to become more involved at AOS and become more educated with technology.” Even when Grady moves on from AOS, Mr. Row thinks AOStudios will have a lasting impression.