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Riley Clemmons Makes Second and Third Trips to Seacrest Studios!

Talk about feeling inspired!  Patients were very “SMILEY” with RILEY after Christian pop singer, Riley Clemmons recently performed for grateful families in Seacrest Studios at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta and Levine Children’s Hospital!

Among her favorites, she sang “Better For It’ and “Hold On”.  Everyone was in awe of the 18 year old’s range, level of talent and maturity.  One fan was so excited to meet Riley after telling her she listens to her music every night before she goes to bed.  Another parent couldn’t help but admire how the young singer managed to find just the right words to comfort and encourage everyone in attendance.

Following her fantastic mini-concert in Atlanta, we wrapped up the visit with a fun game of Riley IN or Riley OUT? (with everyone else playing along ultimately!) We learned she’s IN with sushi, rollercoasters, sky diving, reality TV, karaoke with friends and the “floss” and OUT with scary movies, dyeing her hair purple, swimming with sharks and Uber pool.  Thank you Riley Clemmons for such a fun and uplifting visits! We are all “Better For It!”

 

Christmas in…October! Miss USA Put Patients in the Holiday Spirit With Her Latest Visit to Levine Children’s Hospital!

Written Recap by Seacrest Studios Intern, Randi Moultrie

Miss USA 2018, Sarah Rose Summers, took time out of her schedule to stop by Seacrest Studios at Levine Children’s Hospital to visit many patients that were anticipating her arrival. She got to meet some amazing patients and talk about their Halloween plans, their favorite Disney characters and she even gave us some early Christmas spirit by singing “Rudolph the Rednosed Reindeer.”

After visiting patients, Sarah Rose came down to the studio to answer a few questions about how she deals with her nerves before a big pageant, what got her interested in becoming a child life specialist and how she felt in that moment of being crowned Miss USA 2018. “It was all vivid, until that moment,” Sarah Rose told us about remembering the moment she was crowned. Now, Sarah Rose is not only Miss USA 2018, but the first Miss Nebraska to gain that title.

Sarah Rose got to participate in one of the studio’s most popular games, “Finish Those Lyrics.” She got to test her music knowledge on-air and see what lyrics she really knew. From pop to country, she knew her musical stuff.

Sarah Rose was an exceptional guest in the studio and we cannot thank her enough for coming to hang out with us. Her visit was nothing short of, “Perfection!”

 

Levine Children’s Hospital – Intern Showcase

Seacrest Studios is filled with endless possibilities. Through the eyes of a child it is a place to escape. A home away from home. A world full of endless color, games, entertainment and hope. It is filled to the brim with people who care. 

But what does the studio mean to an intern? It is a place to grow, learn and prepare you for the professional world. College students are given first-hand experience with state-of-the-art equipment. They develop skills in photography, videography and writing while hosting their own radio shows and spearheading out-of-the-box games with patients in mind. Most importantly? Interns are presented with the unique opportunity to create lifelong relationships. Read below to hear just how impactful these are.

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Carly Thomas
Elon University ’19

Carly Thomas is a Broadcast Journalism major at Elon University. She has a passion for entertainment news and aspires to have a career in the industry. She has worked with children since she was a young teen, and when she found an internship that combined her desired career path with children, it seemed like a dream. Carly’s hobbies include: singing and graphic design, two things she was also able to incorporate into her summer internship at Seacrest Studios.

“Being able to go up and meet patients and get them excited for what Seacrest Studios is all about and then later seeing them come down and smile. Some kids were nervous about coming down to the studio but seeing how happy they were once they were down there made this internship one I will never forget!”

Cory Peeler
University of South Carolina ’20

Cory is currently a junior Broadcast Journalism major and Theater Minor at the University of South Carolina. His passion is television and film and he hope to become a producer one day. Cory decided to major in Broadcast Journalism because he loves telling other people’s stories in a beautiful way. An additional passion includes acting, and the art of stepping into someone else’s shoes to tell their truth to the world.

“The Seacrest Studio 5th Birthday Party!!! I absolutely loved having the community come together and celebrate Seacrest Studios. Seeing the patients come down and smile made it all worth it.”

Darbi Horne
University of South Carolina ’19

Darbi is a native of Greenville, South Carolina and will be a senior Broadcast Journalism student this year. Garnet and black runs through her veins and she could not be prouder to be a Gamecock. When her Seacrest Studios supervisor, Meredith Dean, offered her the opportunity to work with the Ryan Seacrest Foundation she snatched it up in a heart beat. As a Broadcast Journalism student, media effects her life every day for the better. As a student she feels incredibly fortunate for the opportunity to combine her passion for media with her love for kids into one internship. She quotes, “This was a chance of a lifetime that I will never forget.”

“My favorite memory was really connecting with a little girl that eventually became stuck to my hip. I looked forward to seeing her every single shift, and my days weren’t complete without her! She eventually worked up the courage to cohost a show with me and it was the most rewarding and fun experience I had all summer.”

Destiny Gettis
University of South Carolina ’19

Destiny is from Hilton Head Island, SC. She found her love for Broadcast when she created her own segment at church called “A Youthful Prospective” at the age of 14. She went to a church where many of the children lived in poverty and through her show she would gather events in the community, accomplishments of the youth in church, etc. Through this weekly newscast she was able to uplift children, and discovered an innate passion for sharing stories and making a difference.

“My favorite memory at Seacrest Studios was when Maryssa came into the studio for about an hour and gave such uplifting life lessons on staying positive (she had me in tears the entire time). She was such an inspiring person and always made me feel that the small challenges I face in life there are always others with bigger problems and I can overcome anything. She taught me about new foods that I’ve never heard of.

Emma Freas
Queens University of Charlotte ’20

Emma is a currently a junior at Queens University of Charlotte double-majoring in Music and English. Several years ago, she started her own business teaching piano to kids in the Charlotte community and instantly found so much joy in it. This summer, Emma was blessed with the opportunity to intern at Seacrest Studios, a position that combined her love for music, kids, and communication!

“One of my favorite memories at Seacrest Studios was when I visited a patient in his room and started talking to him about the studio and myself. I saw his face instantly light up with smiles and giggles. That is what we’re all about at Seacrest Studios – bringing happiness and positivity to kids’ lives!”

https://vimeo.com/283836182

Jordan West
Western Carolina University, Winter ’18

Jordan West is a driven young woman who strives to live life with the purpose of inspiring and uplifting others. As a December 2018 graduate from Western Carolina University, she is seeking a full time position in Broadcasting and Public Relations where she aspires to utilize her education and personal experiences. Jordan enjoys interacting with new people and creating lifelong connections. She is thrilled to embark on new adventures and discover what the future holds.

“My favorite experience was having the pleasure to meet DJ Coco / Colleena. She came into the studio for the first time one Friday afternoon and wanted to sing a song to the patients that were staying on her floor. She had the whole floor turn to channel 99 to watch and hear her sing. Colleen stayed in the studio for over an hour just singing songs back to back and had an audience standing outside of the studio clapping, hollering, and cheering her on. I was over whelmed with happy tears for Colleena, and impressed by her amazing voice. She will forever leave a huge impact in my life.”

Kathleen Cook
University of North Carolina at Charlotte ’19

Kathleen Cook is currently a senior at UNC Charlotte. She has a few passions in her life, but the main two are sports and journalism. With two older brothers and a dad who all love sports, growing up, she had no choice but to attend countless sporting events. Her love was instant. Sophomore year in high school Kathleen joined the school newspaper and fell in love with journalism. She quickly climbed to editor-in-chief her junior and senior years. When she came to college, Kathleen knew she wanted to continue to pursue journalism, and immediately became involved with the campus newspaper. She quickly found a niche and became sports editor of the campus paper sophomore and junior year. Now, in her final year of college, she is the video editor for the campus newspaper as well as a digital media intern for ESPN offices in Charlotte.

“My favorite summer memory has to be DJ M. She came down to our studio one day with her cousin and we jammed out to Moana and then DJ M told me about how she makes bracelets and that she would make me one. A few weeks had gone by and I hadn’t seen my friend in a while. On my last day in the studio, Meredith told me someone had dropped something off for me — DJ M made me (and Meredith) keychains!!! It was honestly the best moment in the internship because, while I knew that DJ M would always be a part of me, it showed me that I had made some sort of impact on my friend.”

Kendel Davy
University of South Carolina ’19

Kendel is a senior Public Relations Major at the University of South Carolina. She is a cheerleader for the university and has been voted most spirited three years in a row. She has a passion for helping children and their families as they go through the experience of being in a hospital. Kendel hopes to combine her high spirited energy and passion for kids to work at a children’s hospital in the future.

“My favorite memory at Seacrest Studios was meeting Xavier. He made every shift so much fun! We would always call down to the studio, he pied me in the face for PT and he painted my face. He made my heart melt so many times but especially watching the accomplishments as his health progressed. When he left the hospital, the amount of people that grew to love him was amazing.”

Randi Moultrie
Winthrop University ’19

Coming to Seacrest Studios from Charleston, SC, Randi is a senior Mass Communication major and Business Administration minor at Winthrop University. After an amazing internship opportunity with the Ryan Seacrest Foundation she has found a new love for radio. In the next year Randi plans to move to Houston, TX where she aspires to build a career in the broadcasting field and pursue her master’s in business. Randi’s aspiration is to one day return the Ryan Seacrest Foundation as a Program Coordinator for one of their many studios across the country.

“My favorite summer memory would have to be meeting DJ Coco, her story and pure happiness always seemed to put a smile on everyone’s face. I got the chance to allow her to do my make-up, because I knew it was something she loved and felt she could not embrace being in the hospital, so I wanted to give her the chance to smile.”

Scotty Gavlin
University of South Carolina ’19

Scotty aka “DJ Scotty G” was born in Pittsburgh and raised in Lexington, SC. He once told his mom that he wanted to be a broadcaster and she said, “you can’t do that Scotty, you mumble.” His reply? “Mom I am 8.” (*Note from Scotty: This is a true story, but seriously she is the greatest person in the world.) His mumble did not bring him down as he pursued a broadcast class in high school. Scotty’s love of broadcast comes from his passion for communicating with others and building impactful relationships. Whatever he does in his life, he wants that to be a part of it; News, sports, ministry, whatever it may be just getting to be with people and hearing stories would be a dream come true.

“We did this thing called iHeart Art on Thursdays and one week a boy named Bren came down. He was super little and kinda shy at first. Then we asked if he wanted a song and he said “Rollie Rollie.” (Not the correct name of the song, but so cute.) I then started dancing and when I did he looked up at me and raised his arms for me to pick him up. For the next 30 minutes, we just danced. Danced a little too much because we were asked to calm down. Still though seeing him happy and all the attention on him made the whole day great.”

 

Hannah Slater
University of South Carolina ’18

For a long time I knew that whatever I did career-wise I wanted to positively impact people, however I wasn’t exactly sure how I was going to accomplish that. In high school I began exploring the field of journalism, and it quickly occurred to me that this could be just the avenue I was searching for. Journalism has the opportunity to do such great good in the lives of others, and though that isn’t necessarily always what occurs, I hope to ethically and effectively produce quality journalism to improve the lives of my audience.

“The first time Colleena ever came into the studio was a Friday, which was the day I worked. We knew nothing about her outside of the fact that she was a patient when she came in. Colleena’s mother explained to us that Colleena’s passion was music, so we asked her if she wanted to sing for us. Little did we know the magic that was about to occur. When Colleena began singing, I don’t believe there was a dry eye in that room. Her beautiful voice reflected her beautiful soul, and it was amazing to see such a vibrant light of hope when something so tragic had happened to her family and herself. There are so many moments like this one that occur in Seacrest Studios, and it’s amazing to see the level of strength that such young individuals can have.”

 

Jake Selvey
Wake Forest University

Seacrest Studios from the perspective of an intern:
http://wakeforestreview.com/its-djake-on-the-air/

RSF SPOTLIGHT: Meet Our Charlotte Studio Manager

We’re shining the spotlight on some of the amazing people that help make our Seacrest Studios around the country so special.

MEET MEREDITH!

      

Meredith, the studio manager of Seacrest Studios at Levine Children’s Hospital takes having fun, seriously! Always smiling and ready to play, Meredith exudes positivity and has made being in studio such a special and exciting experience. Learn more about her in her own words:

  • How long you have worked at Seacrest Studios? About a year and a half! Since March 2016.
  • Favorite thing (game/activity, etc.) you do in studio: I dress up as Anna from Frozen every Wednesday to play Bingo and deliver prizes to all of our patients at Levine Children’s Hospital.
  • Most memorable studio guest (and why}: Our patients that host their own unique hour-long shows! Celebrity-wise, I would pick Madisyn Shipman from Nickelodeon’s Gameshakers. She was so touched from her studio visit that she created a once-in-a-lifetime “prom” experience for Joe, a cystic fibrosis patient, on her own time with the help of Levine Children’s Hospital.
  • Do you have a special hidden talent? I can make towel animals, speak French, N64 Master, human jukebox/identify any song faster than Shazam.

Thank you, Meredith, we are grateful for the time you have spent making Seacrest Studios such an awesome place to be. 

New Kids On The Block Visit Patients At Seacrest Studios Charlotte

Video by Intern, Isabella Branham
Blog Post by Intern, Robert Rubino

New Kids On The Block took time from The Total Package Tour to hang in Seacrest Studios at Levine Children’s Hospital. Since the band is originally from New England, they all agree that the south brings true “southern hospitality” along with the hustle and bustle of a big city. From north to south and coast to coast, NKOTB agrees that one of the most important things you can do while traveling is learn the culture from the people. Whether you wind up in a big city like Pittsburgh or a small town in Utah, everyone will have an interesting story that can connect people together with similarities or differences.

Since their most recent album, Thankful, released in May, it only seemed fitting to go around the room and have the boys share what they were all thankful for. It turned out that great minds do think alike and two members voted “family” while the other two voted for “the present.” When asked to elaborate, Danny and Jordan expressed their gratitude in being able to see or talk to their family between tours or recordings. Joe and Donnie both agreed that being able to “live in the now” must come in handy when the “adult world” becomes chaotic and stressful.

Taking a trip to the past, Joe and Danny were asked what their favorite childhood memories were and both shared what their favorite Christmas presents were. Joe recalled quite nostalgically about the day he walked into the dining room and seeing the ventriloquist doll he had been wanting for the past few months while Danny remembered receiving a Godzilla figure that he still keeps to this day. Before the times of Twitter and other forms of social media, the band mentioned how they would spend the whole day replying back to letters they received from their fans. However, letters definitely hold their own sort of charm to them since everyone’s handwriting is unique and receiving a handwritten letter from your favorite boy band is something anyone would always treasure.

Before leaving the guys were asked about advice for any of the patients going through tough times. Without hesitation, Jordan reminded Seacrest Studios that “children are stronger than we think” and are “much more accepting of tough situations” and that was inspiring.

It was great to see that NKOTB had not lost their childlike wonder and reminded Levine Children’s Hospital to be “thankful” for every minute that ticks by.

Patients at Seacrest Studios Charlotte Interview Dierks Bentley!

Written by: Seacrest Studios Intern, Lillie Burrow
Video by: Seacrest Studios Interns, Gracie Thompson & Sarah Ann Craven

We kicked off Dierks Bentley’s visit at Levine Children’s Hospital with a round of questions from our patients. We learned that his favorite Charlotte activity is visiting the Science Discovery Museum with his kids! In an extensi

During the interview, we learned Dierks has an affinity for vegetables, and if he were to have a statue made of him, he would pose with his fists in the air as if on stage in front of a cheering crowd. Dierks admitted that was one of his favorite questions, but our favorite moment was Dierks showcasing his version of the running man and attempting a DJ voice.

Dierks played a round of “Guess that Country Music Star,” and one could say he knew his colleagues pretty well. Dierks and Bryson even sang “Huntin, Fishin, and Lovin Every Day” together. Afterward, Gray quizzed Dierks on his favorite holiday and was so adamant Christmas is the best holiday that he convinced Dierks to change his answer from The Fourth of July to Christmas, too.

When asked whom he resembled, Dierks had the studio laughing when he humbly confessed he looks like Brad Pitt; however, a highlight of the visit was when he was asked, “What is one word you would use to describe yourself,” and Dierks said he hoped it would be grateful.

We sure are grateful for your visit, Dierks! Thanks for a fabulous afternoon full of fun games and unforgettable dance moves!

Madisyn Shipman Talks About “Game Shakers’ At Seacrest Studios!

Recap by Seacrest Studios Intern, Gwendolyn Gies
Video by Seacrest Studios Interns, Katie Anger and Nichole Mondshein

Madisyn Shipman from Nickelodeon’s Game Shakers visited Seacrest Studios at Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte, NC on Friday. A North Carolina native herself, Madisyn shared what she misses most about home when she has to film in California: the Southern food! “If it’s southern, it’s great,” she exclaimed. The patients in the studio were happy to hear that Madisyn’s favorite team is the Carolina Panthers. “I have to support the Panthers. I actually went to go see them against the Rams, and they won,” she said. “It was all over my Snapchat.”

When she isn’t eating Carolina BBQ or cheering on the Panthers, she is in California filming Game Shakers, a show about two Brooklyn seventh graders who start a multi-million dollar virtual gaming company. It’s a great show that focuses on girl power, specifically shining a light on female coders. Madisyn remarked that being on TV is “really surreal.” “It really hasn’t processed to me that I’m still on a Nickelodeon show,” she said. “Whenever you turn on the TV and see yourself, it’s just a weird feeling; but it’s pretty awesome because you’re inspiring so many young kids.”

Her favorite thing about being on Game Shakers is the cast and crew. “We have a special bond. We’re all best friends,” she explained. “The cast is amazing, and the crew, they’re just always looking out for us. If we ever need help with something, they’re always there for us.” Madisyn remembered the time the crew came to the rescue with some duct tape when she broke one of the computers during a run through after pushed it off a cart, sending it crashing to the floor. She told us that she is “the clumsiest person you will ever meet.” “I drop everything. I bet you, in at least every episode, I break at least one thing.”

Not to worry though because, as Madisyn explained, most of the technology you see on Game Shakers is actually green screen. When they film, the actors don’t know what they’re pointing to, or even what they’re playing. “We are just swiping, and tapping and doing whatever, and then they figure something out and put it in.” She personally doesn’t make the games that are featured in the show, but sometimes the Nickelodeon game makers and coders like the cast to play them and get a feel for it before they’re used on air.

As for Sky Whale, the featured game on Game Shakers that is available for download, Madisyn is, according to her, “the worst player,” boasting a score of a mere 300 points!

Thank you Madisyn for your special visit…we really enjoyed having you at Seacrest Studios!

 

Tucker Beathard Sings To Patients In Seacrest Studios Charlotte

Video Recap by: Nichole Mondshein, Seacrest Studios Intern
Blog by: Karleigh Holt, Seacrest Studios Intern 

We kicked off the new year at Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte with a visit from Tucker Beathard! We learned about the inspiration behind his music and his advice to listeners on following their dreams. He said that he has “always been a believer in following your heart” and “tuning out what others say”. He showed his competitive side as he played the “Tucker 12” where he told us about his 12 favorites in under a minute.

Tucker’s interests range from football to dolphins to Reese’s Puffs to Spiderman! His country music knowledge was tested as he worked with a patient to fill in the blanks for the lyrics of the popular country song and its name. (As expected, the two got most of them right!) We also learned about his experience being a big brother as well as his fashion sense, where he told us about his cross necklace — he can’t leave home without it! To finish off the visit, Tucker sang and played guitar, performing an acoustic version of his most popular song, “Rock On” (as listeners sang along.) Following his performance, Tucker also spent time visiting patients’ rooms, signing autographs, and handing out guitar picks. Patients gladly accepted Tucker’s kind gifts and smiled proudly for their pictures with him. He met Bryson, a loyal Seacrest Studios fan, who couldn’t stop grinning as Tucker talked to him. Bryson introduced all of his stuffed animals to Tucker and even showed him his brand new John Deere tractor. We are so grateful for the time that Tucker spent with us and hope he will return back to Seacrest Studios soon!

 

Cast of The Wizard Of Oz Follow the Yellow Brick Road to Seacrest Studios Charlotte

Written by Seacrest Studios Intern, Megan Jurnak

Three members of the national touring company of the The Wizard of Oz brought a little bit of that Emerald City magic to patients and families at Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Sarah Lasko (Dorothy), Shani Hadjian (Wicked Witch), and Rachel Womble (Glinda) entertained everyone with tales of their experience in the travelling production along with words of advice and encouragement for everyone tuning in.

“The failure you can experience in show business can actually be exciting,” Lasko said. “Because when you fail really badly, that’s when you grow the most.”

But, even with the serious advice, there were many moments of laughter when the actresses discussed characters they admired in the production.

“I think if I could choose any character to be…I think I’d be toto,” Womble said. “He doesn’t have to do anything besides be carried around and eat cookies.”

“And he gets the most applause every night,” added Lasko.

Above all else, the cast members advised kids of all ages to follow their dreams and persevere through whatever challenges life could throw your way.

“It’s important to persevere and keep trying because theatre is a beautiful thing,” Hadjian said. “And it’s fun!”

The visit concluded with Lasko performing an exclusive in-studio performance of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” that gathered a crowd of patients and families.

Many thanks to the cast of The Wizard of Oz for such a special visit!

Chris Janson Signs A Duet With Patient At Seacrest Studios Charlotte

No one was prepared for the magic – and music – that happened between country singer, Chris Janson, and a patient at Levine Children’s Hospital (LCH) in Charlotte, NC, when Chris made a tour stop at Seacrest Studios.

LCH patient, Ryan, asked Chris to sing his hit song, “Better I Don’t.” (Chris came with guitar and harmonica in hand.) What happened next held the crowd in Seacrest Studios spellbound! Chris began singing only to find that Ryan was backing him up, word-for-word, as he sang!  Watch the video to see the amazing, and awesome, duet!

As he sang songs and answered questions in the packed studio, Chris made sure to give some words of encouragement, along with an open invitation for patients to come to one of his concerts when they start to feel better.

Called “the future of country music,” Janson serenaded the crowd with the Top 10 Hot Country Songs hit, “Buy Me A Boat.”  He also delighted patients with the song he wrote for Tim McGraw called, “Truck Yeah.”

Patients learned about the early days of Chris’ career – how he went from sleeping in his car when he first got to Nashville – to how he learned to play the harmonica.  He even told patients about his nerves during his first performance at the Grand Ole Opry in 2013. “I don’t get nervous at a lot of shows or a lot of concerts or anything, but I get nervous over the Grand Ole Opry, and rightfully so, it’s the mother church of country music, and for me, personally, it was one of my top 3 goals I ever wanted to do with music.”

Thank you, Chris Janson, for bringing your music, your magic, and “Buy Me A Boat” to Seacrest Studios in North Carolina! We look forward to having you back soon!