On Our Minds is an Edward R. Murrow award-winning, student-led and student-produced podcast about the biggest mental health challenges young people face. In each episode, two teen reporters guide you through stories by high schoolers from PBS NewsHour Student Reporting Labs about the teenage experience that connects, educates and inspires listeners of all ages.
Season 4 is produced in collaboration with KUOW’s RadioActive Youth Media.
For mental health resources, visit studentreportinglabs.org/mentalhealthresources
Season one hosts Noah and Zion recap presenting at SXSW EDU in Austin, Texas and then welcome Matt and Faiza, hosts for season two. Season two of On Our Minds drops in May 2022 — stay tuned!
This episode was produced by Zion Williams and Noah Konevitch and edited by Student Reporting Labs Youth Media producer Briget Ganske with production assistance from Jaylah Moore-Ross. Click here for this episode’s transcript.
On Our Minds — a podcast made by teens, for teens, all about teens — and mental health is back for another season! Season 2 is hosted by high school students Matt Suescun and Faiza Ashar, and features personal stories from students all around the country and conversations with experts and influencers about mental health issues like anxiety, depression, eating disorders, grief, identity and more.
Speaking up can be hard. Matt and Faiza talk to guests about what mental health is and how to open up about our emotions and experiences. Check out Well Being’s Mental Health Language Guide for more resources. Click here for this episode’s transcript.
Special Mental Health Correspondent Deesha Panchal interviews Dr. Daniel Siegel, Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the UCLA School of Medicine. Dr. Siegel explains that teens are not “raging” with hormones, as many people think. Instead, what’s really going on? The teenage brain is being remodeled. Read more about Dr. Siegel’s work here. Click here for this episode’s transcript.
Matt and Faiza explore stories of teen social life, from the dangers of comparing yourself to others, to what it’s like seeing your generation depicted on TV shows like Euphoria. Click here for this episode’s transcript.
Special Mental Health Correspondent Deesha Panchal interviews Dr. Hina Talib, a board-certified pediatrician and adolescent medicine specialist, writer, and teen media creative based in New York City. Dr. Talib gives young people advice on having a healthier relationship with news media consumption. She also advises that while media can “make us feel anxious,” it can also teach us new things, so finding balance is critical for young people. Click here for this episode’s transcript.
In this episode, Matt and Faiza talk about the realities and struggles of middle school, with voices from current middle school students. You’ll also hear from celebrities on what middle school was like for them, what they would tell their younger selves about what they wish they would have known, and advice to students today. Click here for this episode’s transcript.
Student reporter Jacob Tacdol talks to Darryl ‘DMC’ McDaniels from Run-DMC, the popular hip-hop group from the 80s and 90s. McDaniels shares his own story of depression and suicidal thoughts, learning about his adoption, and then finding “the most powerful thing” — therapy. Click here for this episode’s transcript.
In this episode, Matt and Faiza explore how to process the death of a friend or family member, that it’s OK to be sad, and that art and storytelling can help us grieve and remember those who are gone. Click here for this episode’s transcript.
Note: This episode was produced before the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas. Our hearts and prayers go out to the community and our whole country.
Hosts Matt and Faiza speak with documentary filmmaker Ken Burns about his upcoming PBS film Hiding in Plain Sight: Youth Mental Illness. Ken Burns also opens up about his own life, losing his mother to cancer, and how filmmaking and storytelling has the power to keep the past alive. Click here for this episode’s transcript.
In this episode, Matt and Faiza discuss pressure and competition. You’ll hear stories and conversations from students about their experiences with pressure, competition, and failure — including a conversation with the 2021 National Spelling Bee winner, Zaila Avant-garde. Plus, you’ll get tips and advice on combating these issues. Click here for this episode’s transcript.
Hosts Matt and Faiza hear from Alice of Austin, Texas who shares her story of eating disorder recovery and talks to British social media influencer Ro Mitchell about sharing her recovery journey online. Matt and Faiza also talk to psychologist Lisa Damour on how eating and food can affect the well being of teens. Click here for this episode’s transcript.
In this episode, LGBTQ+ teens talk about the unique cultural challenges they face as children of first-generation immigrants of color, and On Our Minds Season One host Noah Konevitch joins Matt to discuss their experiences as LGBTQ+ teens in high school. Click here for this episode’s transcript.
Student reporter Emma Hagood talks to George Johnson, author of the memoir All Boys Aren’t Blue, about growing up Black and queer. Johnson talks about the controversy surrounding his book, and why book bans are detrimental to marginalized communities. Click here for this episode’s transcript.
In this episode of On Our Minds, Matt and Faiza explore specific diagnoses like ADHD, OCD, and Schizoaffective Disorder. They also speak to a doctor about what it’s like to get formally diagnosed with a mental health condition. Click here for this episode’s transcript.
In this episode of On Our Minds, Matt and Faiza tackle topics like racism and bigotry and how each can have a negative impact on teen mental health. On Our Minds season one host Zion Williams also makes an appearance to interview writer and comedian Baratunde Thurston about his new show “America Outdoors” on PBS. Click here for this episode’s transcript.