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Different Learning Styles Benefit from Recording Connection’s Mentor-Guided Approach

Not everyone excels at classroom learning. While this traditional method of education works for some, and is essential for certain subjects, there are other options. In audio engineering learning from a mentor can be more valuable.


In the small town of Saint Anthony, Indiana, located 60 miles west of Louisville, Kentucky, Shoneen Stenftenagel is an 18 year old, driven, energetic single mother who self-describes herself as having “ADHD like crazy.” Nevertheless, she has found a way to get quality hands-on instruction in the recording arts not far from where she lives thanks to Recording Connection, a school that specializes in affordable recording arts training with a mentor-guided approach. The hands-on, communicative instruction she is finding with the program is making all the difference when it comes to acquiring the skills and foundation she needs to be competitive in today’s job market.

In speaking of her own personal learning style, Stenftenagel says: “I do not do well in the classroom especially for long periods of time. I am actually a very intelligent person, Iʼm also taking classes in nursing as well. It’s just that lesson time is something I just can’t do and I’m more of a hands-on learner, so being in the studio and interacting with people, which I love, and doing that I actually get a lot of one-on-one attention with my mentor in particular. That is very much what I need from a learning style and [for] my personality.”
When Stenftenagel’s mentor teamed her up with Greg, an engineer and musician, to assist with working on an electronic dance track, the young woman was able to experience, first-hand, just what goes into collaborating on a project with several creative people on-board. “Greg, is kind of self-taught, and he has this huge song that he’s working on and it’s really complex but so much of what’s in our heads we just “get” between each other. He and I collaborated on this song for quite a while, and we had a guy named Damon from Owensboro (KY) come in, he and I would discuss what we were working on the side like, “Do you think we need to EQ more on this? Do you think we need to limit that?”
Though some would probably assume, Stenftenagel’s youth might mean she doesn’t fully comprehend how what she is learning fits into the big-picture of actual studio work, that’s definitely not the case. In speaking of the knowledge she takes away from working on such projects, she says: “That was really good, being able to work with yet another engineer between the both of us, learning how to work with other people that are trying to do the same thing you are. Greg was really cool because the fact [is] that I got to learn the business side of it. It’s like he’s the customer and I’m the one who’s coming [in] to make his work sound better, so I got the chance to see what it’s like to be in my job position and that was really cool to start off so quick.”
Though Stenftenagel is still in the midst of completing Recording Connection’s six month program at the recording studio where she has been placed in an apprenticeship, she’s already shows a genuine commitment and is even starting to work on projects professionally.
“Even though Greg left the studio I added time outside of the studio with Greg. He and I are working on a project together because we [are] like in-tune and complement each other’s styles so much and that’s really awesome because I’m getting the opportunity to make connections right away and connect with the people I’m working with on a business level.”
So where does this leave the 18 year old single mother? It leaves her with the solid skills she needs to be a contender in a field that actually inspires her. Most of us would say that’s pretty great, definitely a far-cry from being stuck in a dead-end job which is sad truth for many young mothers today. So what is Stenftenagel’s outlook? In speaking of where she’s at and how she plans to move forward, she cites the same refrain we so often hear from the consummate artistic genius: “I think you need to keep asking questions. I always want to learn more and more and more.”
To learn more about Recording Connection’s mentor-guided programs and approach, visit


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