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MTV in the house at Claxton High
Claxton students interview for 'Made' reality show
MTV Fineran
Daryl Fineran
    MTV was in the house Tuesday at Claxton High School.
    A representative from the music television channel came to the Evans County school to interview students for “Made,” one of MTV's reality shows. “Made” follows teens that have a dream and want to be “made” into singers, skateboarders, comedians or just about anything else. The show just completed its 10th season and producers are looking for teens to cast in Season 11, which starts early next year.
    “MTV called a few weeks ago and I was hesitant at first,” said Claxton principal Daryl Fineran. “But I did some checking and talked to principals at other schools that participated in 'Made.' They all were very positive about the experience. So I said come on down.”
    So, on Tuesday about 40 students who expressed an interest in being on the show gathered in the Claxton High gym. They brought with them a filled-out questionnaire, signed permission from a parent or guardian and a photo. Each student was then called separately into an area away from the gym and interviewed by an MTV representative on camera for about five minutes.
    Senior Miles Benton was one of the first to be called into an interview and he was very optimistic about his chances for selection.
    “I was very nervous, but the lady from MTV was very relaxed and put me at ease right away,” he said. “My dream is to be made into an expert snowboarder. I love the X-Games and I would love the chance to be a snowboarder. I give myself a 62-percent chance of being picked!”
    The representative from MTV who came to Claxton declined to be interviewed and would not discuss any specifics about the selection process.
    A handout given to students by MTV gave the following directions for what the two-time Emmy Award winning show is looking for:
    “'Made' is all about making dreams come true. We want to prove that with hard work, and a little help from MTV, you can achieve your goals. We are looking for your specific, individual goal or aspiration that is attainable within the next five months! We are not looking for a vague goal like 'I want to be a star' or people trying to be famous.”
    Waiting for her interview, junior Shoia Collins said she wanted to try something completely out of character.
    “My dream is to be an aerialist in a show like Cirque de Soliel,” she said. “I've never been a gymnast or really done anything like it. But it looks fascinating. That really would be a dream come true.”
    While producers from the show were not specific, Fineran said he believed MTV was interviewing students at Claxton and two other schools in South Carolina to pick one for the show.
    “I think MTV was intrigued by the rural nature of our school,” Fineran said about why he thought the pop culture icon chose Claxton. “Or perhaps they heard about our famous fruitcake.”
    If a Claxton student were chosen for “Made,” he or she would then undergo a month or more of intensive training towards reaching their dream. It may include a mentor or life coach to support the effort and specialized lessons to achieve the goal. Trainers in past seasons included rapper Snoop Dogg, skateboarder Tony Hawk and figure skater Oksana Baiul.
    But whether a student from Claxton makes the final cut or not, Collins was excited the town and school are simply part of the process.
    “You know, not a lot of things happen in Claxton,” she said. “No matter what happens, it's pretty cool MTV came here. It's cool I'm going to be interviewed for a once-in-a-lifetime chance to make a dream come true.”
    James Healy can be reached at (912) 489-9402.
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