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Metro DC ATD

The Premier Association for Talent Development Professionals in the Metro DC Area

A Day In The Life of A Talent Development Professional

Eugenia Halsey


Meet Eugenia

Hi there! My name is Eugenia Halsey. I'm a voiceover artist and former CNN correspondent specializing in audio narration for e-learning and educational videos. 

I spend most of the day behind a microphone and computer screen in my home studio and am used to communicating with clients across time zones by email, uploading voice projects worldwide via the internet, and logging into Zoom for audio engineering sessions with my coach in Los Angeles. So the pandemic work-from-home life is nothing new for me. And living in rural Charles County, Maryland near National Harbor means lots of peace and quiet.

But I do relish stepping outside the studio periodically and heading back to the city. Being part of the Metro DC ATD gives me a wonderful opportunity to connect with learning professionals and broaden my knowledge of the talent development field.


 
6:30 AM

   Morning Routine   

The first thing I do in the morning is check email - especially for new voiceover requests from my pharmaceutical client in Switzerland. It's already afternoon in Europe. So I need to reply quickly. The client makes PCR tests for COVID-19 and produces videos that teach lab workers how to run the tests. The scripts originate in German. I provide the American English narration and call on my experience as a CNN health reporter to decipher the medical terminology.



 
7:00 AM

  Exercise  

If there are no urgent emails, I set out on my morning jog. One of my favorite trails is a boardwalk along the Potomac River overlooking Mount Vernon.



 
9:00 AM

  Home Studio Time  

After a healthy breakfast, I skim the newspapers and get to work on my latest e-learning project. One of my clients is Marine Corps University. You've heard of audio book narrators? I narrate audio articles about military history and current events. For a history nut like me, it's a dream assignment. But I'm also the audio engineer so I'm responsible for making sure the sound is not only engaging but broadcast quality. After recording the article, I use special software to clean up the track - that is, delete unwanted takes and eliminate extraneous noises. If the project is instructional in nature, I cut the audio into multiple slides. The entire process can take anywhere from a few hours to all day, depending on the length and complexity of the script.


 
1:00 PM

   Lunch  

I like to eat lunch, but if I'm in the middle of recording a script, I skip it and count on breakfast to tide me over.


 
2:00 PM

   Afternoon Recording  

Afternoons look much like the morning. I continue recording or auditioning from my home studio. I check my email box for new requests from casting directors, agents or e-learning companies. Prior to the pandemic, my routine could include a trip into DC to narrate projects such as a documentary on climate change called "Borneo's Vanishing Tribes" that aired on PBS. 



 
3:00 PM

  Afternoon Break  

When I've been buried in the studio for too long, I take a break in my garden, walking around or pulling weeds. There's no end to that task.


 
4:00 PM

   Volunteer Work   

Voice actors, like normal actors, have slow days. But slow days give me the chance to volunteer for activities such as registering vulnerable populations for COVID-19 vaccines, something I got to do in Alexandria recently.


 
6:00 PM

   Evening Routine   

At the end of the work day, my husband and I settle in to watch the evening news. Like me, he's a news junkie, having been a reporter for the Washington Post and a communications expert.


 
7:00 PM

   Family Time   

The evening news is often followed by an old fashioned phone call from our son, a singer-songwriter and music producer in Nashville. We feel lucky he likes to check in.


 
7:30 PM

   Dinner   

Around the same time we chat with our son, we start cooking dinner. Although we try to eat a healthy plant-based diet, we have a weakness for pizza and pasta, a trait our son inherited. No trip home is complete for him without takeout pizza from Ledo's.


 
8:00 PM

   Relaxation  

After dinner, I read the newspaper or a book or watch NBC's "The Voice," my guilty pleasure. If I'm still awake at 11 PM, I wrap up the day with more news: "The 11th Hour" with Brian Williams on MSNBC.



 

One of the joys of being in the media is that you learn something new every day. After an exhilarating decade with CNN - which gave me a front-row view of history - I transitioned into voiceovers for the flexibility it allowed me as a new mom. Now that my son is grown, I'm delighted to report that focusing on e-learning narration and educational videos has enabled me to continue that pursuit of knowledge. If I can help you in your learning journey, let's connect on LinkedIn

I'm excited about getting to know the Metro DC ATD community!


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