ASD Students Attend Third Coast International Audio Festival


Attendees listen to a speaker at The Third Coast International Audio Festival in Chicago, IL on Nov. 11, 2016.

Quinn White, Reporter

Students with the Alaska Teen Media Institute (ATMI) get many interesting opportunities in media and journalism. These students get to travel all across the state of Alaska and even get to travel to the Lower 48.

On Thursday, November 10th, four students arrived in Chicago, IL for the Third Coast International Audio Festival. Three students from West High School; Quinn White, Michael Johnson and Ezra Dan and one student from Service High School; Michael Stallworth attended the conference. The director of ATMI, Rosey Robards, and the assistant director, Robert Stormo, accompanied them.

ATMI, located at  203 W 15th Ave #103, is a place where youth can go and work on all aspects of media and journalism without needing any experience.

At Third Coast, many aspects of journalism were explored with a heavy emphasis on audio and radio. The conference took place for three days, from the 11th to the 13th and had many prominent journalists involved in audio attend, including journalists from The New York Times and This American Life. More than 700 producers, students, editors, journalists and audio artists attended Third Coast from all across the world. In the past Third Coast has been every other year, but due to its growing popularity, it will become an annual event. Dan said he really appreciated “Meeting people with jobs in radio from different places.” He went on to discuss how meeting different people helped expand his communication and socialization skills.

During Third Coast, there were many breakout sessions, covering everything from how to pitch a story to how to make your listener feel a certain emotion or feeling while listening to your piece. “My favorite part [of Third Coast] was probably attending the sessions,” Stormo said. All discussions and sessions covered the art of storytelling using audio and involved lots of listening. “I think one of my favorite sessions was ‘First Off… This Is In Really Good Shape.’” The session was hosted by Jorge Just, who has worked with both This American Life and Gimlet. Stormo continued on to say, “It was good for me, with my role here [at ATMI] I kind of act as an editor.”

When the students were away from the conference, they got to sightsee around the city. They went to a couple of Chicago landmarks, including the Willis Tower and the Cloud Gate. When asked what his favorite part of the trip was, Dan got very excited and exclaimed, “I got to go to a Bulls game!” He and Stormo got to attend a Chicago Bulls basketball game against the Washington Wizards.