LA or Abroad?
By Kaitlyn Leonard
Throughout this whole process of applying and coming to Los Angeles with SULA, the one question I keep being asked is why I decided to come here in place of going abroad. Although I don’t have a comparison, there are a ton of reasons why I don’t regret coming to LA (in the short time I’ve been here) in place of going to Europe. Some of them are:
-Internships: Getting assigned to an internship, in the hub of the television/film world, is something that is going to put you a step ahead of other peers when looking for jobs senior year. The hands-on experience I’m getting is giving me more knowledge about the business than just what you learn in your Newhouse classes.
-Experimenting: If it’s your first time in California or LA (it was mine), it is an amazing opportunity to experiment and test if this is where you want to be after college without the full commitment of moving your entire life here after graduation.
-Networking: The amount of times I’ve heard the work “network” this semester is crazy, but everyone here in LA is jumping at the chance to help you and help you make connections that will make the transition here even smoother after graduation. I’ve never been in a setting where everyone is more than willing to help you make job connections, which has been a huge help.
-Learning to navigate LA traffic and roads (especially being from the East Coast)
-Multiple opportunities to go to free events organized by SULA, for example: Screenings, television tapings, festivals, studio tours, etc.
-Living and working with your peers: I think the most important thing I have learned about SULA so far is being here with 30 other students in the same boat as you. Making the transition to Los Angeles is a big step for some people, and doing it with other people has made the transition more fun than coming here alone after graduation. Many people, including our professors, guest-speakers, etc, have all said the most important people to “network” with in this business right now are the people here with you. They will be the ones to collaborate with you and help you find work in the future, and collaborating and working with them in classes has introduced me to other parts of the business than what I’m focused on.
Although I don’t have any grounds for comparing LA with going Abroad, I can tell you that I do not have any regret for the choice I made to come here. In the long run, you’re going to make the most of and enjoy any semester away from Syracuse, but if you’re seriously considering a life and career in the entertainment world, a semester in Los Angeles is the step to take.