Faces of Long Island celebrates the uniqueness of everyday Long Islanders. In their own words, they tell us about their life experiences, challenges and triumphs. Newsday launched this social media journey into the human experience to shine a light on the diverse people of this wonderful place we call home.

‘I’ve become a better father and a better high school principal because of creating a podcast.’

Dix Hills

“During the pandemic, I was introduced to podcasts and fell in love with them because of their on-demand nature. I used to DJ as a kid, and I thought, ‘If I’m going to do it, I don’t want to be one of the 80% of podcasts that don’t make it. What do I have to offer people?’ I had just gone through the college decision process with two daughters. For my little one, the journey was difficult because school didn’t come easily. I had to advocate for her and talk to reps, who were so good to me and very accessible.

“As a parent it was emotional going through the process, truly not knowing if your kid was going to be accepted anywhere. When I had the idea for ‘The College Admissions Process Podcast,’ I realized that if the reps were willing to have these conversations with me, and we can give insight into their schools and into their process while providing advice, that might really help people! I’m now in my second year since launching. There’s been over 151,000 downloads. I’m averaging at least 1,700 per week. I’m also the proud principal of Syosset High School. Kids will stop me in the hall and ask what I think about colleges.

If you have an idea for something that is genuine and there to help people, no matter your audience, it’s worth it.

“The feedback from parents all over the country has been tremendous. Because my daughter has an IEP [individualized education program], I always ask reps, ‘What does your school have to help ensure that students with an IEP in high school continue to be successful while on your campus?’ The episodes will hopefully prompt people to come up with their own higher-order thinking questions so that when they meet with the reps, the conversations are going to be richer. I’m having so much fun! I love helping people and giving back. I think I’ve become a better father and a better principal because of the podcast. The creative part is so motivational to me.

“As a high school principal, you have to be creative in many ways because you’re making a million decisions a day, but until now I’ve never had to create a logo or find an intro! I do all of my own editing. It’s extremely rewarding. If you have an idea for something that is genuine and there to help people, no matter your audience, it’s worth it. Pick a topic that is true to you, that you’re passionate about, but that also gives back.”