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MC students help local youth in TV station

As one group of local middle school students practiced reading the news on air in Marietta College’s WCMO television station, another group worked the controls behind the scenes under the guidance of MC student and faculty volunteers during a special Building Bridges to Careers (BB2C)/Marietta College Career Immersion event Friday.

“BB2C is a non-profit organization bridging the gap between education and employment throughout Washington County and Appalachia Ohio,” said Yutaro Ito ’25 (Takatsuki-shi, Japan), a co-coordinator for the event and assistant from the Office of Diversity & Inclusion. “Marietta College welcomed 66 students and 23 mentors this year to provide them with hands-on professional job experiences collaborating with different departments and professionals on campus. Students could choose one particular job experience and work with professionals in the field for about one and a half hours. This event aims to enrich their ideas about what they want to do after high school, which aligns with the goal of BB2C.”

Maia Ngo, a seventh grader from Marietta, operated as the technical director for the first broadcast, getting a crash course on how to operate the controls and manage what was happening in the studio from Broadcast Journalism majors Evie Gravlin ’26 (Columbus, Ohio), Hailey Lanham ’25 (Montrose, West Virginia), and Hunter Withrow ’26 (Dunbar, West Virginia), and Management major Brett Johnson ’25 (Bolivar, Ohio), who also works for the College’s student media department. Izzy Folts, also a seventh grader from Marietta, sat beside her friend and worked as the director.

“I chose this because I have an interest in journalism,” Folts said.

After the first round of broadcasts were finished, Ngo, Folts and Warren students Kaylee Logsdon and Adelynn Russell, who worked the prompter and audio, took their turns in front of the camera reading news and weather updates — getting an idea of what it was like to be in front of the camera.

“I came to Marietta knowing that I wanted to be in Broadcasting,” said Gravlin, who is also majoring in Sport Management and minoring in Dance and Theatre. “I actually didn’t have this kind of experience before college, and it would have been nice to know what I was getting into ahead of time. I’m happy to show the students all the technology involved in broadcasting.”

Across campus, Physics Professor Dennis Kuhl and Franci Bolden, a technician for Physics and the Anderson Hancock Planetarium, conducted physics experiments for another group of middle school students. In addition to highlighting what happens during and after you create a vacuum, Kuhl and Bolden also discussed their backgrounds leading them to working in physics. Students learned about the different areas of physics they could pursue and how each focused on how aspects of the world works.

Nagisa Harada ’25 (Setagaya-ku, Japan) co-coordinated the event with Ito and is also a representative from the Office of Diversity & Inclusion.

“I’m honored to serve as a committee member for this event, and I’m happy to contribute to exposing local students to a multitude of career opportunities,” she said. “Our collaboration extends across diverse departments on campus and makes the most of the resources we can offer to them to enhance their experience.”

In addition to the Broadcast Journalism and Physics departments, the visiting seventh- and eighth-grade students could explore careers in Athletics, Chemistry, Petroleum Engineering, Nursing and Counseling in Health and Wellness, and Parkhurst Dining Service.

John Hutson ’27 (Columbus, Ohio), a student worker in the Office of Diversity & Inclusion and a Charles Sumner Harrison Scholar, was happy to help guide the visiting students during their time at Marietta.

“BB2C gives students a glimpse of what could be in store for their futures — a vague image of some of the different paths they could choose,” Hutson said. “I think it’s really important for young people their age to get an idea of what they can do.”