Congrats to our November Volunteer of the Month, Mallory Falk! Mallory worked as a radio production mentor last year with Big Class's teen program, the Youth Advisory Council. In the program, teens from around New Orleans are mentored by professional writers and artists, and engage in a writing-based multi-disciplinary collaborative project. Read our Q&A with Mallory below:
What first brought you to Big Class?
Aubrey [Edwards, Big Class Teen Programs Coordinator] reached out and asked if I'd like to help teach radio. I immediately loved the sound of Big Class--a supportive, encouraging space where young people develop the skills to tell their own stories and explore their world.
What are some skills you have that help you out at Big Class?
Back when I was a student, I learned all the radio basics through fun, hands-on activities. I try to bring those great activities to Big Class. I also bring my experience as a reporter and producer, which helps immensely as we cover topics like pitching stories, collecting sound and conducting interviews.
What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced at Big Class?
Too little time! The workshops go by so fast.
What are some great projects you’ve helped with? Tell us the story behind one of them if you can.
I mentored two brilliant, budding radio producers as they worked on a feature-length story about the New Orleans education system. They asked students all across the city how they chose their high school and if the school matched their expectations. This radio duo was so impressive and self-motivated - conducting tons of interviews outside of Big Class, mixing sound late into the night. I was blown away by their final product, which offered a moving look into how students navigate our city's unique school system.
What are you up to when you’re not volunteering with us?
Producing stories for WWNO, New Orleans Public Radio and spending as much time as possible near the bayou.