Elon in LA in their own words
The Elon in Los Angeles program entered its fourth summer when the program began in early June. This year, 39 students traveled west to live, learn and intern in the entertainment capital of the world. Students from several different majors are interning at various locations throughout the city.
The program has just one month remaining, and students in the program have only rave reviews for the experience thus far. Here’s a sampling of their responses to two key questions.
How is the program going for you so far?
“It’s going very well. It’s awesome. A fun fact about Will Anderson is that he was that little dork sitting at home on his computer as a junior in high school following the Elon in LA blog. Now it’s cool to be here blogging about my own experiences. It’s definitely lived up to my dreams and more. Elon in LA is the reason I was even sold on considering Elon, to be honest.” – Will Anderson ’13, media arts & entertainment major
“It’s certainly been useful to have one day a week where we have a group class where we can work on our own projects and have a balance between a professional life and an academic. It’s challenged me a little more in doing these projects to do things I wouldn’t pursue back at Elon as strongly. It’s best, especially in such a unique situation, to look for a challenge and accept a challenge, and I think it’s helped me quite a bit.” – Ian Boyd ’12, media arts & entertainment major
“It’s been going really well. This program has given me the opportunity to take everything I’ve learned and make my own product with my own aesthetic. I really feel like we’ve been given the time and the tools to create a product that’s inherently our own.” – Liv Dubendorf ’12, media arts & entertainment major
“It’s pretty amazing. I’ve been able to get hands-on experience with working at Lionsgate, with reading all these scripts, with getting the chance to see what are good scripts and bad scripts. I’m loving it. I foresee when I graduate I’m going to be out here, whether I’ll be out here searching for work or looking for graduate school work, I’ll be out here because I know this is where I want to be if I want to do screenwriting.” – Chris Hodum ’12, media arts & entertainment major
“There’s a lot of room for freedom in terms of where and when you work on projects and who you work with. I like the way it’s set up. I like that we’re not all living in same building. It’s like a forced independence, which is better for us.” – Scott Richardson ’13, media arts & entertainment major
“I’m really enjoying the program so far. It’s a lot of fun. I’m learning a lot about the professional world and a lot about general video production. I’ve also gotten a taste of the city of Los Angeles, and that’s great for me to get that experience. I’ve gotten to know a lot of the other people really well so far. Overall, I’m really glad I’ve done the Elon in LA program.” – Taylor Shain ’12, media arts & entertainment major
“It’s amazing. It’s beyond my expectations. I love it. I’ve fallen in love with LA. This summer has been really rewarding so far, and its’ gone by so quickly, which is great and also scary. I’m so happy I did it, and I feel like I’m accomplishing so much through my summer. I’m definitely growing as a person. I’m definitely more career driven after this summer. I wanted to do this program before I even applied to Elon.” – Hadley Stecker ’13, strategic communications major
“I’ve been out here a month, and it’s already the best summer of my life. Everything has been really organized, and it’s been so much fun, and I’ve done so many things I wouldn’t ever do if it wasn’t for the program. I’ve loved the program. It’s been a lot of fun, and it’s been great.” – Asha Wilson ’13, media arts & entertainment major
What’s the most valuable part of the program for you?
“It’s giving me a community. We have (39) students to share their experiences. It’s cool to hear what everyone is doing. It’s a great mid-point in my life where I’m not completely independent, but it’s a great step to getting there. I always knew Los Angeles would be a place I would need to go to if I wanted to pursue my ultimate goal, so Elon providing this great program was my ticket to doing that.” – Will Anderson ’13, media arts & entertainment major
“It helps to be doing it in a group, with a group of people very much like myself who are being introduced to LA for the first time. Coming out here with some people who are my friends, who I’ve known for a while is definitely a good way to feel comfortable with a very new, very highly populated area. That’s the most valuable thing, having fellow Elon people working with me.” – Ian Boyd ’12, media arts & entertainment major
“I really like the sense of community. It’s nice to have a support system in an unfamiliar city. The one thing I’ve really liked that I didn’t necessarily expect from the program is that it’s forced me to work well with other people. It’s been good to be in class with a bunch of cinema people that want to be here and want to learn and want to create something they can be proud of.” – Liv Dubendorf ’12, media arts & entertainment major
“If I had just come out here to do only an internship, I’d be going to Lionsgate and reading scripts, and that would be good, but I wouldn’t be able to explore Los Angeles as much. It really gives me a chance to see what could be home for me. It’s more of a realistic understanding of my surroundings and that’s what the program has really helped me get.” – Chris Hodum ’12, media arts & entertainment major
“There are a lot of opportunities here, and you can take advantage of them. You can just go to your internship, come home and do the bare minimum, but some people want to take advantage of what’s given to us and participate in optional activities. Part of the program is social, part of it is learning, and some of it is the actual interning itself. I wouldn’t be out here if it wasn’t for the program.” – Scott Richardson ’13, media arts & entertainment major
“I think it’s learning how to balance an internship along with a class and still being able to perform at your best when you’re busy most of the time because I imagine lots of people are doing lots of different things at different times. Learning how to balance everything you do is incredibly valuable.” – Taylor Shain ’12, media arts & entertainment major
“I personally am really happy with my internships. That has been huge for me that I landed an internship with a company (Rogers & Cowan and Lionsgate) where I’d want to work. If I had just come out here on my own and was living in apartment by myself or even with one of my friends, I would be scared to try new things. I would be scared to put myself out there. This is a good stepping stone to becoming a true, independent adult. The most valuable part would have to be having the feeling of support, the sense of comfort, without having your hand held. We’re treated like adults but still have a support system.” – Hadley Stecker ’13, strategic communications major
“If I just come out here by myself, I don’t think I’d get the opportunity to get feedback and work with all kinds of different people. Being out here gives us an excuse to work together. But at the same time, it’s also a competition. It’s a weird mix of working together but also that push you get from seeing everyone else work and saying, ‘I want to be good, too.’” – Asha Wilson ’13, media arts & entertainment major