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When Kara Boodakian ’07 (Winchester, Mass.) arrived at Lafayette, she was certain that she wanted to include music in her course of study. Through an internship at Boston-based radio station WGBH, she combined her anthropology and sociology major with her music minor and a bit of history by working with the station’s live jazz recordings.

At WGBH, Boodakian worked with producer Jeffrey Nelson to create CDs from live jazz recordings taped in the early 1990s in the station’s studio.

“The opportunity to listen to unique, live recordings of artists such as Herb Pomeroy, Carol Sloane, and Dave Brubeck was one I could not resist,” she says. “I have been involved in musical performance my entire life, but this process of editing music was one that I had never touched before.”

Boodakian edited digital audiotapes by breaking performances into tracks and removing some applause so that individual songs can be played on the radio. She was impressed by the station’s professional, yet laid-back, atmosphere.

“I worked in both an editing suite and with about 10 other employees,” she says. “One of the most valuable lessons I learned was to ask for help if I needed it and I realized that everyone was the ‘new kid’ at some point. I also learned the importance of efficiency. Everything I did was in real time, so just burning a CD took at least an hour. Because I could multitask and was organized, I accomplished about three times the amount of work that would have gotten done otherwise.”

Boodakian adds that she was especially glad to make a tangible contribution to the station. The music theory courses she took at Lafayette helped her appreciate the compositions’ complexities.

“The music I worked with was actually going to be used on the radio,” she says. “It was nice to know that I was not just doing ‘busy work;’ I was really helping out these program managers and producers.”

Boodakian is academic affairs chair and associate representative for athletics on Student Government. She is a member of the swimming team, the jazz a cappellagroup Quintessence, and Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority. She also plays alto saxophone in jazz band and was an orientation leader for first-year students in the Class of 2009.

Categorized in: Academic News