Archived Story

One NHS student’s MADE experience

Published 11:02am Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Niles Daily Star

Rob Tate, a cameraman for MTV, was recently in Niles.  He strolled through the halls of the high school and sat in class for an entire school day. He trudged through the snow and weathered the harsh Michigan winter.  He even spent an entire day in the home of a local family he had never met.

He did all of this to capture a day in the life of Torence Witherspoon, a sophomore at Niles High School who dreams of becoming a varsity football player next season.

After MTV’s show “MADE” brought representatives to interview local high school students, Witherspoon was the only teenager in the school to receive a phone call back from the show.

A couple of days after his phone interview, a cameraman from MTV traveled to Niles to get a small taste of Witherspoon’s life.

“He followed me around everywhere for two days,” he said.

Having a stranger with a camera following him like a he was a celebrity for two days was difficult for the 16-year-old to deal with at first.

“I never went to the bathroom when he was around me,” he admitted.

However, he was able to get used to the spotlight after a while and started to enjoy his “MADE” experience.
“It’s not what people expect it to be,” Witherspoon said of the experience.  “It’s really planned out…I must have repeated myself a thousand times that day at school.”

The process of being “MADE” was also a surprise to Witherspoon.

“They take it very seriously to make you into what you want to be,” he said.  “It’s not just your chance to be on TV.”

Witherspoon is one of two finalists for “MADE” in the area.  However, he won’t have to compete with anyone for a spot on the show.

“They can take us both, but they don’t have to take either one of us,” he said.

For the present, Witherspoon will have to wait for the call from MTV as to whether or not he will actually be on the show.  If he does receive a spot on an episode of “MADE,” Witherspoon will not only have to endure football training and practices, but five weeks of cameramen, repeating his sentences, and very few bathroom breaks.

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