The Elon in Los Angeles program is the reason I wanted to join the Fellows Program, albeit the winter term section. At that point in my life perspective I just thought it would be something cool to tell my friends back home about that I was in a program where you could go to the infamous LA.
Years later, after being a Fellow, making videos, learning through fun and failure and building up a healthy reserve of ambition I was ready to go out for the summer and see what I could accomplish.
This trip started off horribly. I literally out-did every stupid blunder I’ve ever committed on the first day when I managed to lose my key before even getting to my room. Inconceivable I know. I called my girlfriend and my mom stressing out and whining over what had happened. Turns out everything was fine in the end. (Although the whereabouts of that key will haunt me forever).
I began interning and went from an internship last summer where I powerwashed for four hours a day (at a commercial production company…) to one at Extreme Home Makeover where I had a big influence over whether families in dire need would move along in the process of getting a brand new home. I met super cool interns and co workers and received sage advice about life, the business, and passion.
The summer flew by and the final projects were upon us. To be honest I got assigned to direct a short film that I wasn’t particularly interested in. What I quickly realized was that the big man upstairs had amazing plans for me that my petty self had no comprehension, foresight, or understanding of. I began a journey that was filled with doubt, pressure, and pitfalls but was buoyed by motivation, great attitudes, and a powerful drive to find and communicate something of meaning.
One of Elon’s alumni Tim Johnson told me that when you find talented people there is an excitement that builds and reminds you why you are doing what you are doing. He said that there are so many out there who are willing to settle for less and pass by with mediocrity but when you find those who dream and who have talent- that fire rekindles. I’ve experienced this and am excited for the future. One of my goals with Focus was to make people cry. Better put: I wanted to create something that people could connect with and feel emotion for that may or may not result in tears. People crying is like the ultimate validation for your work because its the physical result of an emotional reaction that proves you had an effect on them. And when you affect people, it feels good.
This summer has been amazing and Los Angeles has opened up my eyes to what the future could become.
Great job everyone, It’s been a pleasure and I can’t wait to see what happens next.