NSU coach’s family to be featured on ‘House Hunters’

Family walking on campus being filmed by TV camera crew

ABERDEEN, S.D. – When Nicole and Coach Saul Phillips moved to Aberdeen, their search for a new home gained national attention – the family will be featured on an episode of HGTV’s “House Hunters.”

It’s an experience that will also bring national exposure for Aberdeen and Northern State University, as some footage was shot on campus.

“I was so excited to have House Hunters come to Aberdeen because we were immediately really taken with all of the growth on this campus,” Nicole said.

With a “stunningly beautiful” campus that includes the new Athletic and Recreation Fields and the Jewett Regional Science Education Center, Nicole said there is an air of excitement around Northern.

“The way that the community and the college weave together so seamlessly is really special and it doesn’t happen everywhere,” she said. “So when we had the opportunity to show off NSU on a national level, that is really exciting for us.”

Fun Experience for Kids

Nicole said she also thought it would be a cool experience for their children: Jordan, 15, Charlie, 13, and Ben, 9. The family took part in five full days of shooting for what will be a 22-minute episode.

“Not everybody gets to be behind the scenes of a television show, see how it’s made, and look at it from its origins all the way through the time it goes on TV,” she said.

Nicole is a former TV and newspaper journalist who is now an author and speaker, advocating kindness through her website, www.braveandkind.net, and her Facebook page. She’ll speak at noon Sept. 20 at Aberdeen’s Bethlehem Lutheran Church at an event called Spark Joy.

Neighborhood, Light Important

When it comes to what they were looking for in a home, the couple said they had some things in mind, but remained flexible.

“We had a checklist, but we were willing to compromise on a lot of things,” Nicole said. “But neighborhood and lots of light were really important to us.”

It was a somewhat difficult choice – they were interested in two of the three houses they were shown – but in the end, they were happy with the outcome.

‘This is Home Now’

Now, they’re happy to be settled in.

“I love my home. I love Aberdeen,” Nicole Phillips said. “I love where we are at as a family right now. It’s just very precious to me.”

Saul said it’s been an unbelievable transition, and they’ve felt welcomed to both Northern and the Aberdeen community.

“This is home now,” he said. “That’s it. Simple as that.”

About Northern State University

Northern State University is a regional university that offers outstanding academics and exceptional extracurricular activities at an affordable price on a safe, welcoming campus. Northern State recently announced its Educational Impact Campaign, with a goal of raising $55 million for a new South Dakota School for the Blind and Visually Impaired, new athletic and recreation fields, and an on-campus regional sports complex. Once the campaign is complete, NSU will be the recipient of more than $100 million in privately funded building projects and scholarships within a decade. To learn more, visit NSU Admissions.