Starting from this semester, the KAIST Podcast is available on the KAIST English website (www.kaist.edu). Professors Mik Fanguy and Tim Thompson of the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences discuss the latest research, campus life, and any upcoming events in KAIST on the weekly podcast. The KAIST Herald met with the two professors to find out more.
Could you briefly introduce yourselves?
[Fanguy] My name is Mik Fanguy. I have been working at KAIST since 2001, and I teach scientific writing.
[Thompson] My name is Tim Thompson. I have been at KAIST since 2008. I teach some of the required courses, presentation skills, business projects, and current events class.
How did the KAIST Podcast first start?
[Fanguy] The Public Relations team first talked to us about making the KAIST newsletter. However, we thought it would be a great idea to try some other form of media, as there is already so much print media at KAIST. I really enjoy listening to podcasts and we do not have one at KAIST.
[Thompson] With audio, you can listen to a podcast at anytime from anywhere. We try to keep it at a manageable length around 20 minutes so that the students walking around the campus or commuting from outside the campus could listen to it on their way to classes.
What is the purpose of the KAIST Podcast?
[Thompson] The first purpose is to provide a platform to discuss and announce great scientific breakthroughs that happen at KAIST. We are both working with the PR team and often edit the press releases about the recent scientific breakthroughs from KAIST. However, most people do not realize all the great things KAIST is developing, and we wanted to provide such information. Tim and I like to talk about these things over a meal or beer, so the podcast just naturally evolved from our enjoyment of discussing these things. The second purpose is to inform the students and faculties about the campus life. We announce interesting events people might want to hear about.
Could you tell us more about the type of contents to expect from the KAIST Podcast?
[Thompson] We try to do three major sections in every podcast. In the first section, we introduce a topic and discuss. We sometimes have a feature in which we interview people. We also like to introduce and play music [composed or performed by] the KAIST students. The second section is about the campus life; we talk about things to eat, places to go, things to do, and what is going on around campus. In the third section, we announce any upcoming events people might be interested in.
[Fanguy] We can choose what we want to talk about in the podcast. If the topic is not interesting enough to have discussion, we will not address it. We only deal with things we can relate to and that way, we can bring our own perspective to it.
Are there ways for students to participate in the podcast?
[Fanguy] We would love to interact with students. You can send us an e-mail about anything you think is worthwhile, whether it be research, campus events, or announcements. We would be happy to answer any kind of questions and get some feedback [on] what we can talk about. We also started the “high-five initiative” to find out who is listening to our podcast, so you can just give us a high-five when you see us. More student music would be greatly appreciated.
How would you like to see the podcast develop in the future?
[Thompson] Right now, we supply all the ideas and topics, but I would like things to be demand-driven by the listeners. I would like people to say, “Go find out more about this and that,” “Where are some good places to eat?” and “What’s going on around campus?” Let us know, so we can tell others about it.
Anything else you would like to say to the KAIST students?
[Fanguy] I really enjoy doing the podcast, and it has been very rewarding. I just hope people enjoy listening to it as much as we are doing it. Success of it will be decided by the listeners. If you like it, help us spread the word about it. I would love to hear from you through e-mail, Facebook, or in person if you see us, so that we know we are actually reaching people.
For more information on the podcast, please visit www.kaist.edu/podcast. If you have any comments or suggestions, please contact email@example.com.
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