In the beginning of June, I loaded my car to the brim, hopped inside, and headed south on Interstate 5. In a general sense, I knew what I was doing. I was moving to Los Angeles for three months for an internship in the Burbank area. At the time, I really had no clue that it would be life changing.
Just shy of three months later, I sit here writing this article wondering where the time went. My summer experience was incredible and all made possible by an internship. I landed a gig as a marketing intern with the company that owns Internships.com and TweetMyJobs.com. I have always wanted to live in Los Angeles and I thought there was no better opportunity to test it out by temporarily relocating. After all, if it did not work out, I always had Oregon to call home after I finished school. My only hesitation was living expenses, it was a paid internship, but not even five paid internships could cover the typical cost of living around here. I tapped into my resources and called some fellow fraternity brothers. I quickly found an inexpensive option to live at the University of Southern California chapter of the fraternity. Needless to say, I was more than excited.
I started off my first day at the internship offices located in Burbank, just north of Los Angeles. Since that day, I have yet to look back. The experience was invaluable. I worked closely with the Chief Marketing Officer and the marketing team. I had interactions with the entire executive team, including our Chief Executive Officer and Chief Business Officer, both of whom had partnered previously for extremely successful endeavors. My days were filled with marketing and social media and my computer screen was flooded with tweets and e-mails. I learned quickly how to adapt to the fast-paced lifestyle and work environment of an internet start-up. I saw the ins and the outs of business development and partnership negotiations.
Not only was the internship extremely valuable, but it also gave me the opportunity to experience living down in beautiful Southern California. I knew nobody before moving into the fraternity house, but I was able to leave with quite a few close friends and an extensive network of contacts. I experienced Hollywood, saw comedy shows with headline names, and even saw a couple of private film screenings of soon to be blockbusters. I spent my weekdays in my office and my weekends on the beach. I couldn’t have asked for a better couple of months.
It wasn’t just the internship or the chance at living with brothers from another school that made my experience what it was, it was a mixture of all of it. I came to LA to “try out” Los Angeles if you will, and see if it would be a good fit for me. I knew I could handle a few months, I was just unclear if it was somewhere I wanted to relocate to permanently. My hesitations have since been addressed and I am happy to say that when school is done next year, I will be making the transition to living down here full-time. This experience was more than I could ever have imagined. I learned a lot about myself and my desires. I strengthened relationships, made new ones, and opened a ton of doors of opportunity for myself for the future.
For that Los Angeles, I thank you.