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The Greyhound

The Student News Site of Loyola University Maryland

The Greyhound

Amazon Prime Presents “The College Tour”


Loyola has just been introduced to the streaming world of Amazon Prime with the debut of the third season of “The College Tour,” hosted by Alex Boylan. The show interviews real students to learn more about their college experiences. Loyola’s episode is about 30 minutes long and showcases ten students’ Loyola experiences. Lauren Bayer ‘23, Mia Ferri ‘22, Knekiya Harper ‘22, Maria Jaeckel ‘22, Eleanor Kluegel ‘22, Natalie Labib ‘22, Christian McNeill ‘22, Ben Ostrowski ‘24, Edmundo Pribitkin ‘22, and Fatima Velasco ‘23 each got the opportunity to share their truths and perspectives of the Loyola experience.

During the six month process of preparing for the show, Loyola and “The College Tour” crew worked closely to ensure every detail was ready to go by the time Boylan and his team stepped on campus for the first time. Each student had the opportunity to write their own script and edit it with Boylan’s team to ensure each part reflected the Loyola experience in the ways the students wanted to. 

The Greyhound was able to connect with Boylan on a Zoom call to discuss why it was so important to him for the students to tell their stories in their own words. 

He said, “Authenticity to The College Tour is so important, it’s not even funny. When a student is cast, and we know what story we’re gonna tell, and we’ve decided this student is going to be best to tell it, it’s important that the first draft is written by them. And we stay true to this with “The College Tour” everywhere because we want it to be their voice. We want it to be their authentic story. We do not want to be putting words in their mouth.” 

Segments in the episode include everything from student involvement on campus, to academics, to life in Baltimore. McNeill used his segment to discuss Loyola’s focus on cura personalis, or “care for the whole person,” and how Loyola has helped him grow within his community and spirituality. McNeill is an advocate for civil rights and has earned opportunities to travel the country and advocate for immigration rights on Capitol Hill, as well as march alongside civil rights activists Rev. Jesse Jackson and Dr. Naiomi Barabara King. McNeill said once he was selected for the show, “the rest was history.” 

“My favorite part was being able to share my story without it being tampered with or edited in a way that was more beneficial to the producers. They really gave [me], along with the other people, a lot of freedom and autonomy to share our stories,” said McNeill. 

Jaeckel glowed on the screen as she discussed how Loyola helped her become CEO of her own jewelry business, Blue Bone Jewelry. Jaeckel competed in Loyola’s “The Baltipreneurs Accelerator,” open to all entrepreneurs in Baltimore to help develop their businesses. After 24 weeks of preparation in this program, she won first place and was awarded over $8,000 to invest in her business. Additionally, the Career Center helped Jaeckel secure an internship with Pandora Jewelry. Jaeckel was honored to be a part of the series. She said:

“A staff member at Loyola recommended I submit a video. I also thought it would be a great opportunity to market my business and show my appreciation for all Loyola has done for me.”  

Loyola was the first college in Maryland to be on the show, but other local colleges will soon have the opportunity to be a part of this unique production. Boylan said, “We’re filming season five right now, so the big goal for us is we want to tell the story of every college and university in the country.” 

Virtually showcasing colleges in the pandemic world provides an opportunity for high school students to “visit” schools they otherwise might not have had the chance to see. His niece inspired the show when she was looking for a college to attend but did not have the opportunity to travel to every single school she was interested in. After watching the third episode of the show, his niece decided to go to Arizona State University. She saw their special feature on Starbucks, and as an employee, she was able to secure a full ride through their scholarship program. 

As for Loyola, Boylan said, “There’s a few things about Loyola that just stand out. I mean, there’s a lot. I think you’re in a great college town. It’s in an awesome location. I love the fact that 90% of the students at Loyola live on campus through their senior year. I think that’s amazing.” 

Boylan also loved the idea of “cura personalis.”

“I think that resonates throughout every story that we told, and you feel that energy the second you step on campus,” he said.

In the words of McNeill: “Watch the show. It’s a great one!”

Watch Loyola’s episode on IMBD TV, Amazon Prime, or

Featured Image courtesy of Christopher Connell via Flickr Creative Commons

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Amazon Prime Presents “The College Tour”