By Avery Owens |
Grace Casper, a sophomore at Baylor University, approached me like an old friend as she arrived for our interview. I complimented her on her noticeable tan and asked if she traveled to the beach for spring break. She laughed and told me she had just come from her first spray tan, and proceeded to show me a series of videos on her Instagram story documenting the experience that she made hysterical.
This is who Grace Casper is— a simple college girl learning how to adult. And her greatest lesson so far? Learning how to podcast.
Her podcast, Those Who Know, can be found on iTunes and Spotify. With only six episodes, her show is in its early stages.
“It feels like I’m on a secret mission,” Casper explained to me as we began discussing her show.
This is due to the fact that her podcast is filed under society and culture when it really should be labeled under Christianity.
“I don’t want people to turn it off when they find out it’s about Jesus,” Casper said.
She hides the name of Jesus in all summaries and titles, hoping to draw people in with relatable topics. At the end she draws in the line— she tells them about Jesus.
Targeted for Millennials and Generation Z, Casper’s podcast desires to give people hope. She wants to communicate the message that despite what older generations say, kids today do experience real and genuine pain.
“Basically, the podcast serves to expose that our generation knows what pain is,” Casper said. “I want to eliminate the lie ‘you don’t know what pain is.’”
Casper believes these words to be a myth and that the narrative should be changed.
“We have social media. We have Internet in our pockets all the time. There are increases in mental illness,” Casper explained. She believes all these factors contribute to the pain that older generations don’t understand in the same way.
Casper was inspired to contribute to the podcast world after listening to a similar show for years. The podcast told relatable stories of pain, but Casper felt like something was missing.
“I used to listen to a podcast by a woman who was not a believer. She tells really painful stories of pain, but there was no hope. I think the Lord is the hope that people need to hear,” Casper said.
After Casper realized there was a gap in the market that could be filled, she began to teach herself how to podcast.
Podcasts have recently been on the rise– with 600,000 shows and 62 million listeners, the phenomenon is spreading. Casper contributes to this trend, but despite her experience thus far, claims she is in a way still learning about how the process works.
“I don’t know what I’m doing– I’m truly figuring it out as I go,” Casper said.
She records all of her podcasts in the basement of Moody Library and says it takes three days for her to edit them. Then, she uploads them and blasts on social media.
“I am just trusting that whoever needs to listen to it will listen to it. It’s traveling by word of mouth— friends who send it to their friends who send it to their friends,” Casper said.
Casper also uses her podcast as an opportunity to make her interviewees feel loved and appreciated through the process.
“It’s important to make the interviewee feel valued,” Casper said. “People aren’t super pumped to share their whole life on a social platform for the whole world.”
She talks about how this podcast has been a springboard in her life, giving her confidence and boldness to try new things and to put herself out there.
“One day I’m gonna share my own story,” she promised.
Casper is excited for the future of her podcast and where the platform could potentially lead her.
“I am expectant that when I graduate, I will have more hands on deck and it will grow more,” Casper said. “As the podcast grows, so will my listeners. The content will shape and shift with them as well. All I want is for God to take the reins on it.”