Kent State Associate Lecturer and Student Becomes College Finalist in NPR Podcast Challenge

National Public Radio (NPR) has whittled down and decided on the college finalists in its College Podcast Challenge. Kent State University at Ashtabula Human Services Technology associate lecturer and journalism student Joan Steidl is one of ten students from across the country who became finalists. This means she’ll have the opportunity to win $5,000 as the grand prize winner or win $500 for being a finalist. 

Steidl’s podcast is about being one of the more than 6 million older college students in the United States. 

“It was unexpected and nice. I had fun producing it, and I felt like a winner for simply doing this,” Steidl said. “I kept a promise to myself and it was a nice surprise.”

Steidl also had help from fellow journalism major Maddy Haberberger.

“I’m so grateful Joan let me be a part of this. We always had so much fun in class together, and she did such an incredible job putting it together,” Haberberger said. “When we recorded the interview, we probably talked for an hour or more just because we had such a great time. I’m so impressed how she was able to cut it down and happy she’s being recognized for her talent and hard work.”

Currently, Steidl is working on a bachelor's degree in journalism as well as a masters degree in Human Development and Family Studies. 

The grand-prize winner and finalists will be announced soon.

To read more about NPR’s list of finalists, visit

POSTED: Wednesday, April 20, 2022 11:29 AM
UPDATED: Friday, June 21, 2024 02:45 AM
Ian Jameson