According to The New York Times report from March, podcast listeners have significantly increased in the last year. Research conducted by Edison Research and Triton Digital, an audio technology and advertising company, claimed that podcast listenership has increased among all age cohorts. The New York Times wrote that 40% of people between the ages of 12 and 24 listened to a podcast in the last month, which is a 10% increase from 2018.
Participating in this expanding podcast trend are students from Seton Hall University. A friend group of senior diplomacy and international relations majors Casey Stickel, and Seton Hall graduates Caroline Hall and Kyla Stewart started a podcast dubbed “MUN01” in relation to their collective interest in Model United Nations.
MUN is an educational simulation in which delegates can engage in debates, resolution writing among many other activities which mimic the real-life responsibilities of the United Nations members.
The group posts a new episode every Monday and publishes their material on the Spotify and Apple Podcasts applications. Although the podcast features a current member and former participants of Seton Hall’s United Nations Association (SHUNA), it is not affiliated with the organization.
According to the group’s Podomatic statistics, their podcast has been downloaded in over 28 countries. Also, besides their pilot episode, their 22 episode regarding delegate socials is their most downloaded episode. Furthermore, excluding their statistics from Apple Podcasts, their Spotify audience includes 380 listeners and 1,600 streams.
On the podcast, Hall said the group discusses their experiences with MUN. In every episode the group attempts to diversify their conversation topics, yet Hall claimed she certainly enjoys recounting their favorite MUN memories.
“We’ve really tried to create a more informal community surrounding MUN where people are able to reach out to us about their clubs,” Hall said. “Overall, we want MUN01 to be a fun thing to listen to and learn from delegates all over the world.”
Hall said also that the group records the episodes in her and Stickel’s bedroom due to its compact size and lack of reverberation.
“The setup is really unimpressive, we set the mic up on an ottoman and all sit on the floor around it,” Hall said. “Definitely, no fancy studio usage.”
Regarding their preparation, Stewart claimed that in their casual storytelling episodes preparation does not require much time, nevertheless, in their instructional episodes which include information on club management, how to be a successful delegate, among other things, the group outlines and prepares the conversation prior to recording.
Stewart said that preparation time does not account for editing each episode. Stickel handles the responsibility of editing every episode, which consists of limiting chatter and eliminating awkward pauses, which requires much effort, according to Stewart.
The group has featured several MUN-related friends from the University to participate in the podcast and discuss their experiences. The group hopes to expand their guest-list and invite guests from outside of the University.
“We are looking into prospective ways to interview and guest showcase people who aren’t local, but on a limited tech budget, we have to be creative,” Stewart said. “Guests are something we want to work on. A major purpose of ours is to showcase delegates of all kinds and backgrounds giving them the acknowledgment they deserve.”
The podcast is hosted on Podomatic and may be listened to on Spotify and Apple Podcasts. Additionally, there are smaller streaming sites that have acquired their RSS feed such as iHeartRadio Podcasts.
Thomas Schwartz can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.