Winners of Our Second Annual Student Podcast Contest

Winners of Our Second Annual Student Podcast Contest

The inner monologue of an anxious teenager. A fictional radio story about a robot takeover. An investigative report about teenage climate activists. A personal narrative about what it’s like to have a baby at 15.

These are just a few of the winning pieces from our Second Annual Student Podcast Contest, in which we invited teenagers to create an original audio program, five minutes or less, about anything they wanted.

We received nearly 900 submissions — including interviews, conversations, reviews, investigations, personal stories and fictional tales — from students all over the world.

But there were 39 entries — 12 winners, 15 runners-up and 12 honorable mentions — that stood above the rest. These podcasts pulled us in right from the start and kept our attention to the end. They brought their topics to life with music, environmental noise, media clips and the human voice. They were entertaining, informative and emotionally gripping.

But don’t take our word for it. You can listen to all the finalists for yourself, below.

Congratulations to our winners and thanks to everyone for participating! In the meantime, don’t forget our Summer Reading Contest, which runs from June 14 to Aug. 23.


“How My 90-year-old Neighbor, a Holocaust Survivor, Sees America Today” by Lila Shroff

“Sexism at Lillian Osborne” by Kaia Janmohamed

“Teen Pregnancy Story” by Trinity Edwards

“The Truth About Your Seat Belt” by Molly Cleary

“A Day in the Life of an Anxious High Schooler” by Cece Benz

“Ram’s Evolution” by Tomer Keysar

“Alexa, the Start of the Robot Revolution” by Silas Bartol and Mila Barnes-Bukher

“The Ides of March: An Uprising to Save the Earth” by Madeleine Klass

“Black Ink” by Kaela Wilkinson and Jalen Lewis

“Period Poverty” by Genevieve Schweitzer

“Depression Memes and Me: Why I Stopped Looking at Depression Memes” by Zuheera Ali

“My Incarcerated Family” by Samantha Zazueta (shown at the top of this post)


In alphabetical order by title

Note: Students who submitted more than one entry, or who used copyrighted music, were disqualified.


Contest judges: Jessica Cheung, Caroline Crosson Gilpin, Jeremy Engle, Michael Gonchar, Willow Lawson, Julia Longoria, Keith Meatto, Andy Mills, Kelly Prime and Natalie Proulx