RadioActive Youth Media

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RadioActive is the youth media program at KUOW where youth delight in discovering public radio journalism. Hear stories created by RadioActive youth producers about the people and issues that matter to young people in the Northwest. Subscribe to get our latest audio pieces delivered directly to you.

RadioActive stories produced prior to October 2012 can be found on our archive or here, too!

Welcome KUOW's Spring 2015 RadioActive Youth Producers

Mar 12, 2015
KUOW Photos/RadioActive Staff

KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media is proud to offer our spring journalism workshop. Six teens, aged 16-18, will spend 12 weeks learning what it means to be a journalist.

During that time, they'll gain the skills to create radio stories. They'll do all of the research, interviews, writing, voicing and editing to produce their own feature stories on topics of their choice.

RadioActive's Guide To Making Friends In New Places

Feb 26, 2015
Kendra Hanna recruiting members for the Kendra Needs Friends Club at the University of Washington
KUOW Photo/Iman Mohamed

February is known as a month to focus on love and romance, but in this month's podcast, we focus on the people you lean on year round: your friends! We hear what friendship means to preschoolers and retired people and a timeless story of teenage adventure. 

Plus, you don't want to miss our story about one girl's unusual attempt to make friends in a new place.

RadioActive is KUOW's program for high school students. Listen to RadioActive stories, subscribe to the RadioActive podcast and stay in touch on Facebook and Twitter.

Foster High School senior Nandina Cengic is a feminist, filmmaker and activist.
Courtesy of Jesenko Spahic

Do you hate men?

Nandina Cengic said she hears that question all the time. That's because the Foster High School senior tells people she is a feminist. As she puts it, people assume she's a "man hater," who's "trying to squander men."

"Which isn't true at all!" she said. 

PHOTOS: Amazing Sculptures Made By A Student Who 'Didn't Know What She Was Doing'

Jan 29, 2015
Courtesy of Amal Ahmed

What makes an artist? A high school art student inadvertently stumbled upon a technique to make ridiculously cool, award-winning sculptures -- using something you have lying around the house. Listen in to learn how. 

Plus, a 15-year-old sculptor ponders the dilemma between making art for himself and making the Disney princesses his classmates want to buy. 

RadioActive producer Jaylen Wheeler at a RadioActive listening party.
KUOW Photo / Jason Pagano

I’ve done this a million times: Wake up, get ready, drive to school.

At first, I hated getting up so early for school every day. It only made it worse that it took me an hour to get there. It would have been easier if it was five minutes away.

Tara Keo is a single mother to Sokinna, 16, and Kayden, 2.
KUOW Photo/Jason Pagano

RadioActive's Sokinna Keo has learned to find forgiveness for her mother's past as a drug user. Here is their story, in Keo's words: 

When my mom was in middle school, she fell into a bad place. She told me she got expelled from school and started hanging out with "the wrong people."

Nathan Boss, 16, poses with his Airsoft gun before playing the game for the first time. Airsoft guns are sold with orange tips to make them look less realistic, but most players remove them.
Courtesy of Nathan Boss

RadioActive's Nathan Boss, 16, made his first foray into American gun culture through a real-life combat simulation game called airsoft, where players use guns that shoot non-lethal plastic pellets. This experience inspired him to examine whether playing with fake guns fosters real violence. 

The "field" is located down a high wire path, behind a Les Schwab in Maple Valley. After a couple hundred yards, I turn off of the path into a dense forest. I come to a clearing.

People are setting up, laying down gun bags and test firing guns. Most are military-looking types: short hair, good gear, well disciplined. Others have their faces adorned with bits of metal and their ears pierced. The smell of tobacco vapor fills the air.

Burmese Refugee Yearns For Her Lost Father

Jan 6, 2015
Sara Ling hopes to return to Burma to search for her missing father.
KUOW Photo/Amran Aden

Sara Ling is from Burma. When she was a child, her father disappeared. That's why her family left their country.

"Everything about my country is damaged," Ling said. "No hope besides to escape our country to make a new life." 

Burmese immigrants, like Ling's family, were the largest refugee group to settle in the United States from 2000 to 2012. 

Why This Teen Stopped Hiding Her Dad's Abuse

Jan 2, 2015
Ivy Jacobsen speaking about her abuse at her high school graduation.
Courtesy Ivy Jacobsen

As a senior at Lake Stevens High School, Ivy Jacobsen appeared confident. Blonde, popular, and a varsity athlete, her peers labeled her as the perfect girl next door. But Jacobsen said there was a time when she wasn't so confident. 

"I was very insecure. I had many friends but I was still really shy," Jacobsen said. "I wasn't really comfortable with who I was, body-wise."

KUOW Photo/Jenny Asarnow

When RadioActive's Noah Phillips Reardon was 13, her friend put Beat Connection's song "Silver Screen" on a mix tape. Noah played it over and over and over again. Four years later, she sat down with the Seattle band in KUOW's studio for this live performance and interview. 

Keyboard player and producer Reed Juenger explains the phrase he coined to describe today's iteration of the perennial artist's dilemma: Industrial Condo Sadness.

Feminism, Resilience, And The Needle In The Haystack

Dec 18, 2014
The graduates of "RadioActive’s" Fall 2014 Introductory Workshop: Noel Gasca, Azeb Tuji, Nathan Boss, Sokinna Keo, Amran Aden and Jaylen Wheeler.
KUOW Photo

This month, RadioActive is talking about issues that are not addressed enough. You’ll be hearing from some of the newest RadioActivians -- graduates of our fall workshops held in the Tukwila Community Center.

Azeb Tuji introduces us to a rockin' feminist.

Jaylen Wheeler tells his journey of being the odd man out.

Noel Gasca shares the story of a young women who seemed like she had it all but held a deep secret.

Also, Nia Price-Nascimento asks: what are peoples' first impressions of you?

Sit back, grab some hot cocoa and listen to some amazing stories for December's podcast. Happy Holidays!

Demonstrators at a Seattle march on Nov. 25, 2014, in response to the Ferguson grand jury decision.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

It hurts that yet another officer isn’t being indicted for killing an unarmed black man; especially in the case of Eric Garner where there is no ambiguity. These injustices can often make us feel demoralized. But it may seem surprising that after attending a rally on November 25, I feel inspired.

The Best Of RadioActive Summer 2014

Dec 1, 2014
KUOW Photo

This past summer RadioActive Youth Media completed its 11th year at KUOW. Eight high school students spent six weeks writing, editing, recording and mixing their very first radio stories and podcasts. In this showcase, we hear from these producers and the work they completed. Click to listen to the entire show hosted by Ann Kane, or skip to your favorite pieces below.

Anecjokes, Chai Tea, And Role Models: Stories To Get You Through Fall

Nov 26, 2014
Seattle Public Library's University District branch.
Flickr Photo/javacolleen (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Fall getting you down? This month's podcast is sure to make the transition into winter a lot easier with a series of uncomfortable situations in the University District Public Library, a poetic piece by Kamna Shastri, and an inspiring story of a Japanese-Brazilian man living in America. Check it out!

RadioActive is KUOW's program for high school students. Listen to RadioActive stories, subscribe to the RadioActive podcast, and stay in touch on Facebook and Twitter

21 Things RadioActive Learned At Third Coast

Nov 20, 2014
KUOW Photo

KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media recently spent three days in Chicago with 550 of the world's most talented  radio makers at the 2014 Third Coast International Audio Festival.

“I washed my hands next to [NPR health reporter] Alix Speigel,” said youth producer Madeline Ewbank. "Once [former Planet Money reporter] Alex Blumberg passed so close to me that I could've tripped him. Not gonna lie, I seriously considered it.”