February 4, 2011
By LIZ ROBERTSON
No goal is too high as Olentangy High School’s Zack Molle sets his dream for a star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame.
“I think I have some natural ability,” Zack said. He said he can get on a mike and engage an audience, and he often receives comments about his voice. “If I get a star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame, I’ll know I made it. I might as well set my goals high.”
But until that time, Zack will be attending the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, “one best broadcasting schools in the country,” Zack offered, and the one he really wanted.
He said the school only takes 350 freshman out of 4,000 applicants. And Zack learned just the week before Christmas (and on the week of his birthday) that he had been accepted.
The school offers three radio stations and two TV stations which suits Zack’s purpose as he hopes to be on either, possibly as a sports commentator.
And then there is the possibility of a really good internship as well.
Zack thinks he will probably pursue his career elsewhere.
“I’m originally from Chicago, so I’m thinking Chicago, New York or Los Angeles,” he said, adding, “that’s where it’s happening.”
Zack said during his freshman year he probably wrote two news articles with just a bit more in his sophomore year. But then he started listening to radio more, and by the time he walked into his first radio station at a local university, “I just knew.”
And then came the senior night football game where as the “voice of the Braves,” he was asked to do color commentary for a local radio station.
“My entire family listened that night,” he said, smiling. “I think I did pretty well that night. It was the first time I had headsets on. Wow. You’ve got to talk a lot as the game goes on. But it becomes more and more natural, and you get into a zone.”
“I have Zack in my broadcast video class, and he’s one of the executive producers. He’s an expert in Final Cut Express (video editing software), and taught himself a lot of the program,” said high school journalism teacher Jessica Roads. “He truly is the ‘voice of Olentangy,’ and I wish him the best of luck next year at Syracuse. Though, I don’t know what I’ll do without him in Broadcast next year — he’s taught me more about editing than I’ve taught him I’m sure!”
Zack said he thinks the “whole radio aspect came into focus the last couple of years.”
But it may go back to first grade when he got a football video game. He would call the game as he played, providing the color commentary even then.
He admitted to never playing a football or baseball game in his life, but growing up a Chicago sports fan, he said while he never played, “it’s instinctive.”
Jay Wolfe, Olentangy’s athletic director, said, “He is a great example of one who loves sports and wants to be involved in any aspect of it. He was a statistician for football and is the voice of the Braves at most athletic events. He will be studying broadcast journalism at Syracuse next year. His drive is to be a sports broadcaster someday.”
Going to most of the school’s games anyway, he said he volunteers as announcer for the school. Besides football, he calls most home basketball games for both boys and girls,junior varsity football, most boys and girls soccer and most volleyball games.
“I have enthusiasm. More than some,” he said confident of his work for the school.
Zack also was on stage during his sophomore and junior years. Yet he looks at his work in the theater as a hobby.
“Maybe I’ll do it again at some point. I like spot roles. I prefer to focus on broadcasting,” he said.
Zack also focuses on his studies, taking Chinese through Ohio State University.
“I’m completing foreign language credits for both high school and college right now,” he said. “It was different moving here junior year. I was in limbo for a while not knowing if (his family was) going to move or not.”
But then once in Olentangy, he said he found it “awesome. I was able to announce, take AP classes. I was offered every opportunity. The opportunities here pushed me to be able to be in that 350.”
Looking ahead for the rest of his senior year, Zack thinks will do baseball in the spring.
“Then there is graduation and senior prom,” he said, adding in his spare time, he plays poker and watches sports with friends.
Hoping to get into a radio or TV station in the summer, he said, “It’s important to get your foot in the door. Everything pays off with one ‘yes.’”
Zack is the son of xxxxx and xxxx of xxxxx.