23 episodes

How much did High School shape your life? High School Matters is a podcast dedicated to conversations I have with my former High School students where I set out to find out how High School mattered to them both then and now. What I uncover in these conversations is that the persona that these kids created in High School is not exactly what was beneath the surface.

High School Matters Randy Appell

    • Education
    • 4.9 • 184 Ratings

How much did High School shape your life? High School Matters is a podcast dedicated to conversations I have with my former High School students where I set out to find out how High School mattered to them both then and now. What I uncover in these conversations is that the persona that these kids created in High School is not exactly what was beneath the surface.

    The Dedicated Hero!

    The Dedicated Hero!

    Aaron Bours, the student who dropped out of college to become a soldier in the Israeli Defense Force, has returned to speak with me again. This time he is a wounded hero at the center of the world's most divisive war between Israel and Hamas. Hear about the conflict as he experienced it firsthand, how that experience changed him forever, and how he barely made it back alive!

    • 1 hr 25 min
    The Dedicated Officer?

    The Dedicated Officer?

    Aaron Bours thrived in high school and got the most out of each day there. After graduating, he wanted to be more than just a college student, so he dropped out of college to join the Israeli Defense Force. This experience changed his life. After settling into a successful and stable career, he decided to come out of the reserves to return to the IDF to fight for his country. This conversation felt fun and lighthearted back when we had it, but has become ever relevant today.

    • 59 min
    The Kid Who Got Expelled?

    The Kid Who Got Expelled?

    After recording this emotional and revealing conversation, my guest asked me to protect his identity so his name will not be used.  My guest entered Great Neck North High School as a 10th grader after being kicked out of a Yeshiva. His risky behavior got him kicked out of GNNHS also, this time for punching another student and sending him to the hospital. He’d always seemed like a nice kid to me, but after hearing stories about him from different people, this conversation was my mission to truly learn about him. We talk about the punch that got him expelled, his home life, taking accountability for his choices, his feelings about education, the cycle of influential behavior and so much more. This conversation is particularly enlightening because it gives insight into a truly unique person and how people develop into themselves.

    • 1 hr 18 min
    The Girl Who Found Herself?

    The Girl Who Found Herself?

    Adriana Phillips went through high school on a mission: to find herself. She often felt like her personality had two sides, but she never quite understood why. She looked like she might be a popular cheerleader or prom queen, but instead she was a studious actress. Adriana was driven by this ambiguity. She always questioned and embraced why she felt certain ways. We talk about her struggle in my class, her struggle with boys, and her struggle with her own sexuality. To this day I remember my first moment with Adriana. What I didn’t realize was how much that moment symbolized exactly who Adriana was back in high school.

    • 1 hr 3 min
    The 2 Voices?

    The 2 Voices?

    Leila and Julia Eshaghpour are identical twins. They were both in my AP Chemistry class together back in 2016. They are hilarious, self-reflective, genuine, and unique young women. We talk about what each of their lives has been like growing up with a mirror image of herself. We dive into topics that identical twins have unique insight into, like comparisons, jealousy, boy drama, separation anxiety, and so much more. Things got emotional when we spoke about when one of their friends—who was also a twin—passed away tragically, and how that impacted their outlooks ever since. The spirit of the trialogue flowed perfectly between fun and light to emotional and authentic. This conversation will teach you a lot of the nuances of what it’s like to be a twin, and by the time you’re done listening, you’ll realize it put a huge smile on your face too!

    • 1 hr 12 min
    The Class President?

    The Class President?

    Benny Laitman started high school as a self-described lanky, nerdy kid. He decided to run for class president in his freshman year and wound up winning. We discuss all of the events that took place because of that victory and how his life has been different ever since. We also discuss how his introduction to life as a doctor was thrown for a loop when he faced a catastrophic situation that changed everything forever. From his high school career to his medical career, he faced many small moments and some big moments that have all had a tremendous impact on his life today.

    • 56 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
184 Ratings

184 Ratings

nt1 ,

Great podcast

Mr Appell is the best! Great podcast .. thank you! Still remember my seat in his class and many shared moments… he had a habit of adding R’s to names that has rubbed off on me and present to this day. Listen to this podcast !!

Axelfoley55 ,

A very talented interviewer

I found this podcast and listened to the episode with Emily. I think Mr Appell is a very talented interviewer and I look forward to listening to his other podcasts. I also appreciate the service he’s providing - I hope and believe this can save lives. Thank you for doing this.

risazoe1 ,

Nostalgic

Never had Mr. Appell but alot of my friends did. They always said he was great and entertaining! This podcast is definitely great and entertaining. Very nostalgic brought me back to the high school day at GNN.

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