Breezing Through LA


@parisbarraza

Student journalists from The Breeze received the exciting opportunity to spend two days in Los Angeles visiting newsgroups and participating in different learning experiences.

On the first day of the trip, twelve students packed into two Chaffey vans and headed off to the first stop on the large itinerary list: YouTube Space LA.

We arrived unannounced, so it came as no surprise when we were told we would not be allowed inside. After a quick group decision, we decided to trek further down the street to where the office spaces of Yahoo and The Huffington Post are located.

Though there were muffled whispers of disappointment that we were going to Yahoo instead of Google — also nearby — one tour inside changed all of our minds. Photos were snapped as we wandered in and out of production and sound rooms.

During Yahoo tour, we were invited to peek inside the room where they film the show Mostly Football and met Supervising Producer Josiah Johnson.

Afterwards, we had the opportunity to meet and work with Elisa ‘Wowza’ Lodge, who guided us to become more effective, self-aware communicators through the use of our energy and body movement.

None of us quite knew what to expect from the experience. We bounced around on large balls to ease our tension, mimicked each others’ inflections and posture and wore masks to promote new beginnings. It was only after that we all could appreciate Lodge’s unorthodox exercises. Even the shyest in our group admitted to feeling more confident.

That unique experience brought us closer, and gave us something to laugh about for the rest of the night. It proved to be helpful as we took to Venice boardwalk in pairs to interview different individuals on the street. If we could handle Lodge, we could handle anything that came our way on assignment.

The next day, six of us attended the next event planned on the #LAtour: The Los Angeles Times, where we met with Deputy Audience Engagement Director Samantha Melbourneweaver. Her advice and insight in the field was candy to us, a group of student journalists. All of us were jotting down notes, snapping photos for reference — with one student from the group lingered behind to talk with another reporter at her desk.

The trip ended with a visit to the Autry Museum of the American West where we spent time in the La Raza exhibit before finishing the evening at Griffith Observatory.

For many of us, this trip stands as our first experience being out on assignment. As we made our way back to Chaffey, we swiped through the photos taken and determined what we would share on social media. After we took one final group photo to commemorate the trip, we hugged our goodbyes and headed our separate ways.