10 Enthralling Black Podcasts for College Students
Balanced Black Girl | Side Hustle Pro | Therapy for Black Girls | Hey Jason! | Black Radical Queer | Secure the Seat | ALL THE SMOKE | Reid This Reid That| The Minority Trailblazer |
Young Black Travelers
Podcasts have exploded in popularity. With more people having to work or attend school from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, podcasts have emerged as a major source of entertainment and education. Last year, over 155 million Americans listened to a podcast each week, with individuals aged 12-34 accounting for nearly half of all listeners.
Unfortunately, diversity is lacking in the podcasting world. Historically, the majority of podcasters have been white, which has led to a dearth of diverse content for listeners. Columbia Journalism Review even published an article back in 2017 titled "Why Are #PodcastsSoWhite?"
But as podcasting tools and technology become increasingly accessible, we're beginning to see more diverse podcasters creating content.
Historically, the majority of podcasters have been white. But as podcasting tools and technology become increasingly accessible, we’re beginning to see more diverse podcasters creating content.
According to projections from the U.S. Census Bureau, people of color will make up the majority of the population in 2043. With Americans and college students becoming more racially and ethnically diverse, podcasters must learn to cater to the needs and interests of a much larger spectrum of consumers.
In honor of Black History Month, which celebrates the achievements of Black Americans, we've put together a list of 10 notable Black podcasts. Covering a broad array of topics, such as health and wellness, politics, entertainment, sports, business, and self-development, these podcasts should appeal to many types of college students.
Celebrating Black podcasters allows us to amplify and uplift Black voices. By listening to the following podcasts, not only will you help elevate the status of Black podcasters, but you'll also get the opportunity to learn about issues important to the Black community.
Read on for our roundup of the best Black podcasts that will inspire you, make you laugh, and stimulate your mind.
The 10 Best Black Podcasts to Listen to in College
1. Balanced Black Girl
A premier health and wellness podcast, "Balanced Black Girl" features advice from Black women wellness experts and targets young Black women who want to live their best lives and become the best versions of themselves. Here, wellness is viewed holistically, and listeners are given tips and strategies for protecting their minds, bodies, and souls.
Host Les Alfred shares her love of creating diversity in the health and wellness space by elevating Black women's voices.
2. Side Hustle Pro
"Side Hustle Pro" is the go-to podcast for anyone majoring in entrepreneurship or looking to turn their passion and talents into a marketable and successful business. It's the first and only podcast featuring candid stories of Black women entrepreneurs who have scaled their businesses into profitable endeavors. The podcast has welcomed guests such as Lisa Price of Carol's Daughter and former Fortune 500 executive Nicole Walters.
The host and creator of the podcast, Nicaila Matthews Okome, quit her full-time job as a digital marketer at NPR for a life of full-time entrepreneurship. Now, she helps aspiring podcasters launch their own podcasts, grow their audiences and reach, and start a business.
3. Therapy for Black Girls
"Therapy for Black Girls" focuses on the holistic needs of Black women, covering mental wellness, life challenges, and personal development, as well as topics such as dating, politics, depression, friendships, and business.
The host of "Therapy for Black Girls," as well as a speaker and licensed psychologist, Dr. Joy Harden Bradford recognizes that counseling and therapy have not traditionally been accessible to Black women. As such, her primary goal is to deliver a podcast that illuminates the experiences of Black people.
4. Hey Jason!
A podcast "for men, about men," "Hey Jason!" acknowledges and celebrates the lives of Black men and vulnerability. For Black men in the U.S., having conversations around wellness, self-care, and vulnerability can be socially taboo. This podcast provides Black men with a safe space for exploring topics that have traditionally been stigmatized. Recent themes include romance, family, and self-care in the time of the pandemic.
Host Jason Rosario also hosts "Dear Men," a Yahoo original web series, and is the founder of The Lives of Men, which aims to "help redefine and shape modern masculinity." Rosario developed this podcast to demonstrate to listeners the multidimensionality of Black manhood — Black men can be tough and protective as well as vulnerable and expressive.
5. Black Radical Queer
The voices and perspectives of queer Black people have largely been forced to the margins, often silenced by Black heterosexual experiences. "Black Radical Queer" celebrates, acknowledges, and explores the intersection of Blackness and queerness. Topics include queer representation in the media, relationships, self-love, mental health, and parenting.
The goal of host Jhavia Nicole is to center the perspectives and lived experiences of Black queer people and position them as narrators of their own lives, all while inspiring and educating.
6. Secure the Seat
An acclaimed podcast for professional women of color, "Secure the Seat" explores topics such as how to craft a resume and how to activate your voice in the workplace in order to help women of color find mentors and advance their careers. The series also explores the challenges of navigating the professional world as a woman of color, from dealing with racial microaggressions to lacking confidence in one's abilities and talents.
Host Minda Harts is a career development speaker, consultant, and author of the bestselling book "The Memo." Harts is passionate about elucidating the realities and struggles of women of color who must navigate predominantly white work environments.
7. ALL THE SMOKE
Basketball fans and student-athletes will likely love "ALL THE SMOKE." This podcast's hosts are NBA stars Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson, who have cemented their reputation as fierce competitors and two of the most outspoken players of their time. The NBA life is rife with challenges, as athletes must manage the pressure to perform at their highest potential while also continuing to love the game and harness their talent.
Barnes and Jackson discuss the latest sports events and buzz, and give insight into NBA news, both on and off the court. Recent episodes include an interview with fellow NBA star James Harden and a look at navigating the NBA during COVID-19.
8. Reid This Reid That
Hosted by Black journalists Joy-Ann Reid and Jacque Reid, "Reid This Reid That" covers a variety of topics, including pop culture, music, politics, and issues important to Black women. Joy-Ann is a TV host, MSNBC national correspondent, and political commentator, while Jacque is a former BET news anchor and the current co-host of "New York Live."
9. The Minority Trailblazer
"The Minority Trailblazer" is dedicated to minorities who are, well, blazing the trail. This podcast will likely appeal to students and professionals specializing in areas like education, business, and entrepreneurship. Discussion topics include how to grow a six-figure business, how to navigate racism at work, and how to bounce back from traumatic or unfortunate circumstances.
The host, Greg Hill, is a nationally recognized entrepreneur and speaker on student success and leadership. Hill talks about his experience being homeless to inspire and encourage others to pursue their own purposes and passions.
10. Young Black Travelers
Through real testimonies from travelers, "Young Black Travelers" shares exciting stories to motivate young Black people to step outside their comfort zones, meet new people, and enjoy the personal and social perks that come with exploring the world. Recent episodes focus on adventures in Ghana and how to travel safely during COVID-19.
This podcast is both inspirational and educational, providing listeners with details on popular tourist destinations and handy tips and tricks. If you've got a penchant for travel or plan to study abroad at some point, this podcast could be a great resource.
Why We Need More Black Podcasts
Although podcasting technology has become more accessible to aspiring podcasters, expanding one's audience and achieving high ratings has always been a challenge for people of color. When diverse voices are missing from podcasts, we as listeners are missing out on powerful, transformative stories.
At a critical time in the U.S. when people are reckoning with systemic racism, it's pivotal that we start examining who the creators are, and who is dominating the podcasting space.
Feature Image: LeoPatrizi / E+ / Getty Images