East Coast Girl in a West Coast World
By Barbara (Nikki) Jett-El
Class of 2014
Bandier Program for the Entertainment Industries
As soon as a received my acceptance letter to the Syracuse University in LA Semester I knew I was in for an amazing adventure…. and to date it hasn’t disappointed. Since arriving in Los Angeles I’ve experienced highs and lows and have learned lesson that I wouldn’t have learned for a while, if at all. In addition this semester has been and I’m sure will continue to be full of new friendships, memories, and lessons that I will remember for a lifetime.
Being on the West Coast for the first time has been awesome. Honestly I love this weather and am trying to think of ways to bottle up some of this sunshine and heat and bring it back to Cuse! Although I’m an East Coast girl through and through the Golden Coast has taught me how to slow down, relax a little more, and become more patient. Being here as a senior has really put my life into perspective and has shown me the possibilities and opportunities that await me after graduation. To say that I’m beyond excited and nervous for the next step is an understatement, but being here and having a glimpse into what the next phase of my life may look like helps me realize that I can handle whatever comes my way. One of my favorite things regarding the SULA semester is running into, working with, and being taught my experienced, legendary, and knoweladable entertainment executives. Just being around them inspires me and has caused me to reevaluate, reinvent, and create new career and personal goals.
I’m a music girl 100% and if you know me you know that music runs through my veins; but taking classes like TV Nation and being surround by Television, Radio & Film and Film students in addition to my fellow Bandier classmates has allowed me to expand and broaden my horizons and express my love for and interest in television. I would love to work on a television show in production or development especially Reality TV (I know, I know queue the groans and moans). Seeing Oscar, Emmy, and Golden Globe awards on display at the various production lots has been one another highlight of the semester. I watch the award shows every season and like so many others place bets on the winners and loser for each award, in addition to throwing out my comments and thoughts regarding the red carpet fashions. So being across the glass from such iconic awards that signify such incredible work is remarkable.
As remarkable as the Oscars, Emmys, and Golden Globes are traveling through the city of Los Angeles and the surrounding areas have been an incredible portion of my experience. Visiting Malibu was a phenomenal experience; I’m not really a beach person but traveling down the historic PCH and seeing the beautiful Pacific Ocean and pristine sand from the highway changed my perspective. I also love traveling down the Sunset strip, Hollywood boulevard, and more throughout the week and seeing different landmarks and hotspots throughout the city.
From the sunshine to the severe traffic, LA has been a great opportunity to experience something new and different. I’ve grown, been challenged, and have opened up as a person and burgeoning professional. With all that said I can’t wait to see what the next few months have in store.