On Wednesday, March 28, Cabrini’s communication department hosted a panel featuring four Philadelphia area podcasters, three of whom were Cabrini alumni. The two-hour panel was planned and organized by Jillian Smith, associate director for student media.
“The podcasting panel was an idea I had for the communication learning community,” Smith said. “I was trying to think of ways to engage with them outside of classroom activities but still tied back to what they were learning.” The panel was also open to all students who wished to attend.
The panel discussion
The panel opened with all four participants giving introductions and receiving general questions from Smith. All
of the panelists talk about their journeys to becoming podcasters as well as what
their podcast was about. Josh Sanchez, 2020 alumnus, hosts two podcasts, including “Your Spiritual Best Friend,” which is a mental health-focused podcast. He has been podcasting since December 2017. Jake (Vertano) Smith, 2010 alumus, hosts a women’s wrestling history podcast called “The Golden Era.” Smith has been podcasting since 2019. Rosanne Corcoran, 1994 alumna, hosts a podcast for caregivers called “Daughterhood,” in which she provides insights into the healthcare system for caregivers. She has been podcasting since January 2019. Deborah Stanish currently hosts two podcasts, one called “Doctor Who Verity,” where she and six other women discuss “Doctor Who.” She also hosts a hockey podcast called “Beginners Puck.”
The panel then evolved to where the students could ask questions to the panel. The questions ranged from the challenges each podcaster has faced throughout their podcasting career to what motivates them to continue to make new podcasts. Stanish, whose “Doctor Who” podcast has been airing for ten years, said her biggest challenge was keeping things fresh. “The podcasting landscape has changed. And we always said if it wasn’t fun or if we didn’t feel like we were doing anything new, we would stop,” Stanish said. Sanchez explained, “You’re doing it because you love it.”
Another question asked was how they feel their podcasts had impacted people.
Jake Smith said that he’d have people coming up to him thanking him for talking about certain women’s wrestling topics. Corcoran gave a heartfelt response. “I had somebody say to me that every time she gets in the car she puts it [her podcast] on and she’s listened to every episode three times,” she said. “I’m her traveling companion and it helps her when she’s taking her parents to appointments. When she’s between appointments I have people email me and say they feel less alone because I’m listening to you, it’s the biggest gift to me thinking I can help somebody.”
The panelists stayed behind afterward to give the students opportunities to ask more questions. The panel received overall good feedback from students. “I thought the event was interesting and insightful,” Matthew Rutherford, senior digital communication and social media major, said. “I’ve been tossing around the idea of starting my own podcast and the panel was very helpful.”
As Jillian Smith said, events like these are important for building community and engaging students outside of the classroom. If interested in more events visit the Cabrini Communication website.