Dan Casarella was struggling with his first job at VH1 when he realized that college prepared him for what he wanted to do but not how to go about it.
While working in Los Angeles for “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” Casarella reached out to his colleague, Ray Boyd, to pitch “Leaving the Nest,” a podcast focusing on media resources for students. He wanted to be able to give back to the Temple community and create a space for alumni to help current students.
Boyd, a 2013 journalism alumnus, and Casarella, a 2015 media studies and production alumnus, plan to reduce the gap between Klein alumni and current students with the launch of their new podcast, “Leaving the Nest” in conjunction with the Klein Alumni Association. The podcast is set to be released around Temple’s homecoming and aims to create a platform for Klein alumni who want to give back to the community after graduating.
“Leaving the Nest” will feature interviews conducted by Boyd and Casarella with alumni working in media and communications to discuss gaining experience in the field.
“Temple played such a big role in who we are personally and professionally,” Boyd said. “We met at Temple and for us this was kind of a way to cure the itch for ourselves wanting to do podcasts.”
They both had a passion for podcasts and giving back after graduating from Temple. The idea for “Leaving the Nest” was first conceived in 2017 but did not come to fruition because of Boyd and Casarella’s busy schedules. However, COVID-19 delayed the need for the podcast because so many opportunities for students were put on hold, Boyd said.
“I went back to Dan and was like, this might be the perfect time for this podcast idea because people can’t connect in person, they can’t get that face to face and these students are losing the opportunity to connect with alumni,” Boyd said.
Because Casarella was in Los Angeles and Boyd in Philadelpha, the two wanted to work together to focus on their respective cities.
“The premise was more focused on highlighting alumni in Los Angeles and Philly, with me interviewing the ones in LA, and Ray the ones in Philadelphia,” Casarella said.
Once Casarella returned to Philadelphia for a position as a coordinator for the marketing content agency, Lightning Media Partners, there was no longer a specific focus on working with Los Angeles alumni. Boyd and Casarella aimed to work with the university itself to connect with alumni across the country.
By working with the Klein Alumni Board, Casarella and Boyd were able to work with students directly as opposed to marketing and researching on their own.
Erin McGinn, a 2014 media and film studies alumna and Klein’s director of alumni engagement, has helped guide the two creators to apply for the Temple Alumni grant that is funding the project.
“We applied for a grant through Temple’s Alumni association last year,” McGinn said. “This grant covered all the equipment costs and subscription costs. I basically helped with the logistics and keeping things on track.”
As a Klein alumna, McGinn had a vested interest in the success of “Leaving the Nest.” Her biggest goal is to connect alumni who haven’t been involved with Temple years.
She works as a project manager for the duo and was responsible for reaching out to potential guests, helping with promotion and reaching out to the communications team.
Ultimately, Boyd and Casarella hope to engage with current Temple students as well as prospective students and alumni to create a space for media resources.
“It feels like an opportunity to give back and use our connections in the media to give something to current students and prospective students on what they can look forward to on the other side after they graduate,” Boyd said.
Be the first to comment