Marcus High School's Online Newspaper

The Marquee

Marcus High School's Online Newspaper

The Marquee

Marcus High School's Online Newspaper

The Marquee

Voices of Marcus

Students voice their opinions through podcasts

Introspect of the youth

After a long day of school and rehearsal, senior Bella Murtoff and college freshman Elli Scheinman engage in a lighthearted conversation as they pull through the drive-thru for dinner. As the September sun starts to deepen into the sky, so does the conversation. This discussion led to the podcast now known as Introspect of the Youth.

“We weren’t really close before this,”Murtoff said. “We were just talking about different ways of handling your mental health. It was just simple conversations that led deeper about how to better help yourself.”

One episode where the girl’s discuss how to better help yourself is in their episode “distorted realities” where they talk about the effects of social media. They share their experiences of social platforms on their mental health, and how it can be used for a greater good.

In late January the girls put their plan into action and began creating the blueprint of the podcast. They started the journey with one goal in mind— to make an impact on at least one person. 

After coming up with the name Introspect of the Youth, Murtoff and Schienman produced the first episode. Airing on Valentine’s day, the episode kicked off with a discussion about dating. The girls’ share how talking through feelings helps to better understand high school romance.

In another episode the girls’ touch on the journey of self evolution and empowering yourself to grow into a better, stronger you. For this episode Murtoff and Shienman bring in a guest to add more insight on becoming the best version of yourself.

It gave Elli courage to share other topics such as anxiety, self worth, and feminism, knowing her experiences would open up doors to make others feel seen. She said being raw and real is what was needed to get the message she wanted across– that you shouldn’t hide your emotions. You should and can feel how you want to feel.

“I think the best way to connect with people is sharing your own personal anecdote,” Schienman said. “Being able to share personal experience and being vulnerable sometimes shows other people that they can as well, and that it’s valid to feel through things.”

To reach teenagers, Murtoff and Schienman knew that meant having their listeners’ voices in the podcast. For each episode the girls’ put a poll on their Instagram to ask their followers what they want to hear on the episode for that week.

“We answer those questions on the podcast because we want it to be as authentic as it can be with having actual questions from actual teenagers,” Murtoff said.

While the podcast has been a growing experience for both girls, their purpose stays clear in sight. They want their focus to not only be of their experiences, but their listeners as well. With the topics they cover such as love, friendship, feminism, and mental health, they make it a priority to get their listener’s thoughts as well.

“We give our personal insight on things that may seem negative,” Schienman said “We talk about our truth in hopes to inspire people that it’s okay to not be okay sometimes. We want to create the most authentic conversation possible so people have the opportunity to relate.”

Sustainable Cents

While stuck at home during COVID, sophomore Veda Ganesan scrolled through podcasts to pass the time. While listening, she quickly realized that others were discussing climate change in ways that were simply ineffective, because they were not addressing the financial side of a sustainable environment. Through this she became inspired to create her own podcast. Soon after, Sustainable Cents was created. 

“You hear a lot of these podcasts talk about how you can solve climate change,” Ganesan said. “But then they don’t actually provide tangible solutions. My podcast talks about those solutions like recycling, investing , supporting and donating.”

Ganesan believes everyone should be able to participate in effective ways to stop climate change. Sustainable Cents became an outlet for Ganesan to discuss the crossroads of climate change and how to further prevent it. 

After seeing companies advertise expensive ways to reduce climate change Ganesan knew she had to do something. She used the podcast as a way to promote effective measures that will be less expensive. She informs her listeners to make little changes in their lifestyle such as recycling unused plastics and investing in causes or organizations that help. 

“If you get enough people, you can make a big enough impact so we can better our environment and our health,” Ganesan said.

In the beginning, Ganesan started with only a few listeners. She also struggled with being the only one working on the podcast. It was demanding running a podcast by herself. However, she knew it would be a great way to bring publicity to a cause she was passionate about.

“We’re promoting a sustainable environment by giving other people the exact steps and the exact measures they can do to promote a healthier environment,” Ganesan said. 

Within the span of just four months she reached almost 400 listeners, inspiring and targeting an audience of students. She hopes to reach others from business professional backgrounds. Her podcast went from just an idea, to being launched on Spotify, Apple Podcast, YouTube and Google Podcast. Ganesan was happy  knowing that even on her own, she could make a big difference, and stayed positive hearing others’ feedback and how she could be a help to them. 

“I like having people give you feedback once I’m done,” Ganesan said. “And then having people enjoy something that I create for them.”

Through her experience, she also encourages other students to use their interests to make change. She also believes that regardless of the stress that comes with it and sends the message to put something out there regardless of the outcome.

“Record your voice, send it out whenever you want, and grow.” Ganesan said. 

Pod Puff Girls

Needing an outlet to be herself in a whirlwind of the high school environment, Senior Avni Garg pulled her best friends together to open a door to new discussions. With one mic and a dining table, seniors Avni Garg, Elin Cho, and Jacque Stevenson created Pod Puff Girls — a place where they are able to release their emotions and opinions, without judgment.

“I feel like a lot of people have strong opinions about a wide range of topics,” Stevenson said. “So it makes it really hard to discuss.”

With an already strong relationship, it was easy for the girls to share their emotions for the podcast. It helped them to strengthen their bond and themselves as people.

“We just want it to be something that we do together and where we have a free space to discuss what we want and if people want to listen to that, they can,” Garg said. 

 The girls say the podcast is not only a safe environment for them, but for those around them. It lets them share their opinions and discuss topics in a comfortable space. The girls kicked off the first episode by sharing how the school system shaped them as people. They open up about the obstacles they went through and how they grew from them.  

“A lot of the people that want to attack you with such heavy arguments don’t have a logical base for the arguments,” Stevenson said. “People think that because if they’re louder with their opponents, they might win over you, but I feel like logic or looking at it from a more nuanced perspective, rather than making it black and white is always going to win over just  being loud, or making everything polarizing when it doesn’t need to be.”

From school, to relationships, to politics and more, the podcast is a blank canvas for the girls’ to paint whatever picture they desire. In episode four, they discussed the recent SCOTUS decision regarding affirmative action. They unpacked the details of the situation and how it will affect people of color going forward.

The girls’ discussions allow them to reflect upon themselves and gain insight on their experiences from different situations, from perspectives of all three girls.

“Anything that’s on your mind, the podcast is a reflective tangible source of our lives,”  Cho said. “ So as the podcast  grows, so do we.”

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About the Contributors
Mashiyat Khan, Reporter
Mashiyat Khan (she/her) is a first year staffer. She loves singing and is really excited to get to write about cool stuff in the Marquee! she also loves long facetime calls with her bestie😋 (and BTS)
Astor Jones, Reporter
Astor Jones (she/her) is a first year staffer and a reporter for the Marcus Marquee. She love fashion design, and can listen to SZA all day long! She also has hopes for writing for New York Times. 

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