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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!

Losing Hair From Alopecia "Greatest Experience" Of Her Life

May 8, 2013
Alyssa Cruz

One day when she was in eighth grade, Alyssa Cruz noticed something strange. She was in the middle of a basketball game. Here's how she's describes it:

I was putting my hair up and I noticed that there was this windy bald patch on the top right of my head. It was completely smooth, and I wondered what had happened, because it didn’t look like someone just cut it off while I was sleeping.

KUOW Photo/Jason Pagano

RadioActive hosts Sarah Rosenthal and Ann Kane bring you stories created by the newest generation of RadioActivians. They reported these stories as part of RadioActive's 2013 spring workshop:

Episode 37: Human Trafficking In Our Backyard

Mar 28, 2013
Courtesy of Yasmin Christopher

This month, hosts Sarah Rosenthal and Kamna Shastri bring you stories about the reality of human trafficking in the Seattle area.

First we hear from Kathleen Morris, an advocate for trafficking survivors with the International Rescue Committee. She tells us what human trafficking is and what to look for in a trafficking situation. Then we hear an incredible story from Yasmin Christopher, a law student at Seattle University whose family was trafficked to rural Grays Harbor County from Bangladesh. Finally, RadioActive reporter Katherine Sims brings us to Westlake Center in downtown Seattle where a vigil is held once a month to stand up against human trafficking. She talks to one high school student, Emily Kubota, who has been going to the vigil for two years.

Welcome KUOW's Spring 2013 RadioActive Youth Producers

Feb 28, 2013
KUOW Photo/Nolwenn Delisle

KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media is proud to offer a spring journalism workshop in Rainier Valley, in partnership with Rainier Scholars, a Seattle college prep program. Six students, age 16-18, will spend the next eight weeks learning what it means to be a journalist. They will pitch, interview, edit and write their own feature stories for KUOW.org later this spring.

The newest RadioActivians interviewed each other about challenges they've overcome:

Episode 36: RadioActive Is In A Relationship With Facebook

Jan 31, 2013
A picture of Molly Freed's Facebook timeline
Molly Freed

In RadioActive's first podcast of 2013, hosts Antonia Dorn and Ann Kane bring us a story from producer Molly Freed who talks about how she learned to have a healthy relationship with her Facebook page. Then we ask the question: Why do you use Facebook?

You'll have to listen to find out what the slang of the month is. Hint: Nicki Minaj.

Episode 35: Dance, Rap, Or Study? Three Teens' Answers To "What Are You Going To Do With Your Life?"

Dec 28, 2012
Ballet dancer Richard Peacock lifts Deepa Liegel as the Sugar Plum Fairy in the Cornish Junior Dance Company's 2012 production of the 'Nutcracker.'
Colleen Dishy

In this month’s RadioActive podcast, hosts Bryce Ellis and Daniel Metz hear stories about high school students who aren’t "sluffin" when it comes to their futures (if you don’t know what "sluffin" means this show has got your definition).

One of the kids in these stories goes down the traditional four-year college route, while the others travel off the beaten path:

Teen Kicked Out Of His House At Age Seventeen

Dec 18, 2012

It started with an argument.

Marcus McGuire, 17, asked his mom if his girlfriend could come over to the house. His mom said no and Marcus remembers his mom referring to his girlfriend as a "broad."

Marcus says he snapped.

He started yelling and before long it was World War III. Marcus's mom eventually kicked him out of the house.

15-Year-Old Girl: My Candles Burned Down My Home

Dec 18, 2012
A picture of Dulce's burnt out bedroom after the fire
Dulce Saucedo

Lighting a few candles may not seem like a big deal. But for RadioActive youth producer Dulce Saucedo, lighting candles one night when she was 15 years old meant losing her family's home in Seattle's South Park neighborhood. Dulce, now 16, shares this meditation on the night when she lost everything she owned.

When my house burned down I knew in that moment that my life was going to change. That everything wasn't going to be the same anymore.

Shake Off That SAT Stress

Dec 18, 2012
RadioActive Youth Producer Evan Adams speaks at the Fall 2012 Listening Party at the South Park Community Center.
Jason Pagano / KUOW

RadioActive youth producer Evan Adams is a junior at Garfield High School in Seattle. He is stressing about taking the SAT because he wants to get into the college of his dreams, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. But MIT requires high SAT scores, and Evan struggles with tests. He shares his story.

Right now at school I get OK grades — I'm working to get all As. But I have pretty much failed every major test since the beginning of sixth grade despite the countless hours I have spent studying for the tests.

VIDEO: Hip-Hop Poet Laura "Piece" Kelley

Dec 18, 2012

Laura "Piece" Kelley is a Seattle hip-hop artist, poet and educator who encourages young people to create music that expresses their lived experiences. A self-described single mom, high school dropout with no college education, she's worked with household names such as Drake, T.I., and KRS-One, and she once read a poem for the Dalai Lama himself.

VIDEO: Teen Challenges Samoan Stereotypes

Dec 18, 2012

Manu Tuito'elau, 18 years old, was running late to history class at Evergreen High School, just south of Seattle. It wasn't his first time.

Manu's teacher called him out for being late. Manu didn't want to put up with it, so he started to walk out of class. That's when he remembers hearing his teacher say that it was always Manu and his people that scored low in class. He also remembers his teacher asking, "How come you couldn't do as well in my classes as you do on the field?"

Teen With Leukemia Cares For Other Kids With Cancer

Dec 18, 2012
Jason Pagano

Maga Barzallo-Sockemtickem, 17, has been battling leukemia since she was 15 years old.

Before being diagnosed, Maga would do anything that let her run, especially play soccer.

Then one day, Maga felt weak and had to lean on a bus stop near her school. She found out she had a rare form of leukemia.

KUOW Photo/Jason Pagano

The fall 2012 RadioActive students just completed their eight-week workshop where they learned how to make radio stories for the first time. In this podcast, we're featuring several of their incredible stories about triumphing over tough times:

  • A 15-year-old girl accidentally burns her house down. Now she's trying to pick her life up from the ashes. She shares her deeply personal story.
  • A teenage girl loves to care for children with cancer at Seattle Children's Hospital. But the help goes both ways — she has a rare form of leukemia herself.
  • A high school teacher tells a Samoan student that he's only good at football. The student channels his anger at that teacher into a documentary about the stereotypes Samoans face.

Countin' Spondoolies

Oct 25, 2012
Paolo Feraboli stands next to a carbon fiber Lamborhini the colors of the Italian flag. It was built by his lab at the University of Washington.
Photo: Paul Kane

"Car on, radio off, and paddle shift ready to go, okay, lets go!"

In this month's podcast, RadioActive's very own Anne Kane takes a ride in a Lamborghini to uncover the relationship Lamborghini has with the University of Washington.

High school students Max Hutton and Sarah Rosenthal are your hosts.

The Teenage Dream: Fitting In, Yet Standing Out

Oct 19, 2012

RadioActive's Halle Bills takes a look at the high school tradition of hazing or "froshing." Froshing happens at high schools across the country. It is an initiation process where incoming freshmen are humiliated as they start the school year.  A source in our Public Insight Network helped make this story happen. 

Her Immigrant Parents Chose Her College - And Her Career

Oct 17, 2012

Jane Wong never got to decide what she wanted to be when she grew up: her parents decided for her. “They decided that I would go into medical school,” she told RadioActive’s Kamna Shastri. “They decided that for my brother too. That was from when I was little, so I’ve sort of grown into the idea.”

Homeless Mom: It Costs $700 A Month To Live In A Van

Sep 13, 2012
The back of Elizabeth Jay's Dodge Ram minivan is cluttered with her clothes and supplies because the van is her living room and bedroom.
KUOW Photo/Sarah Rosenthal

When Elizabeth Jay tallies up her living expenses each month, they come to about $700. That doesn't include rent, because Jay is homeless: she lives in her van.

Marcus Pimpleton Builds A Family Through All-City Band

Aug 16, 2012
Marcus Pimpleton wears a blue All-City Band polo shirt and talks into a microphone at the bottom of a set of bleachers where the All-City Band is practicing.
Kristin Viray

Marcus Pimpleton talks a lot about family. When he's teaching music, Pimpleton might compare a decrescendo to the way teens yell at their parents: they start loudly, but quickly get quiet when they realize it's a bad idea.

"People [in the band] appreciate you and treat you like family," Pimpleton told RadioActive's Farhan Vohra. He was describing the close-knit group of 150 students and mentors from the greater Seattle area who participate in the All-City Band. "They make it a comfortable place to be who you are."

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