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2021 NPR Student Podcast Challenge

Aspiring middle, high school, and college podcasters from New Hampshire and across the country are invited to tell their unique stories as part of the 2021 Student Podcast Challenge from NPR.

Are you an avid podcast listener? Have you wanted to create your own podcast for a while, but didn’t know where to start? Hold on to your ideas and the recording device (it can be a cell phone!) and get ready to create!

With the help of their teachers, students from the 5th through 12th grades are invited to submit their best works of audio. Each podcast should be between three and eight minutes long. For the detailed official rules and the submission guide, click here. For inspiration, and to get an idea of how it’s done, look to NHPR and its podcasts, including Outside/In and Civics 101.

In addition, NPR will also accept submissions for college-level aspiring podcasters. This contest is for students pursuing an associate's or bachelor's degree. There is no age restriction and each podcast should be between three and eight minutes long.


  • February 15 is a deadline for the college-level contest, with the winner announced on March 29.
  • March 15 is the entry deadline for the middle and high school students contest. One winner will be selected from grades 5-8, and another from grades 9-12, with winners announced during the week of June 1.

For both competitions, a panel of NPR hosts and journalists will take a listen to entries from across the country. Segments from the winning podcasts will run nationally on NPR, in Morning Edition and All Things Considered.

Students and teachers can also listen to the Student Podcast Challengepodcast – NPR’s podcast about how to make a podcast – to get tips on what makes a great story and how to produce them.

Still got questions? Read through the frequently asked questions here. If you're still looking for an answer, send an email:

Aytaj Ismayilova is NHPR’s digital membership associate. She worked as a marketing intern for CatchFire creative agency and as a public relations intern for a local Concord communications agency Louis Karno & Co Communication.
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