"Don’t shy away from pursuing your dream because it isn’t as practical as becoming a doctor or a teacher. Remember it’s your life and your happiness as risk. If you take the time to dedicate yourself and do the right research, your dream will become more and more feasible. If you don’t believe me ask Koegle."
Hear Sophia talk about what she did at AOC and advice for other students to follow!
My career roadmap has been somewhat defined.
During my elementary years, I was always writing, drawing, and in and out of acting classes. My mind jumped from wanting to be a novelist to aspiring to be an artist and eventually an actress.
By the time I hit middle school, I had joined Arroyo Seco’s CNN, the school’s broadcasting program. By that point, I knew I wanted to work in the entertainment industry. I wasn’t too sure on what position. I knew I really enjoyed writing content though, especially since I was a huge reader and spent a lot of time going to book events.
My first year at AOC is when my career path encountered some road bumps. My mom was urging me to pick a more practical major. That’s when I began to consider becoming a surgeon. I applied to different medical camps and began preparing different extracurriculars, but my love for all things movies and my long time love for history made it hard for me to dedicate my efforts.
Because I was always home studying, I had more time to read or watch movies and television. A lot of free time went to going to the movie theater. There was one moment in the theater in particular, I think I was watching Baby Driver and during the opening scene, I realized that I needed to go into film. Fortunately, I had my Cubbage meeting after that epiphany.
My dad sat me down at some point my Sophomore year to ask me if I wanted to look into screenwriting. And then, I guess we can say the rest was history.
Here are my extracurriculars relevant to this pathway
DURING MY HIGH SCHOOL CAREER
I took Intro to Screenwriting, Film Aesthetics, and American Cinema: Crossing Cultures.
I spent hours saturating myself in all things film. Rewatched seasons of television, each time I analyzed something different. I read not just for entertainment, but to learn syntax and character and plot development. I also made a point of reading books about screenwriting and writing in general.
Very early on, Ms. Cubbage and I decided since I couldn’t take a lot of the classes that pertained to my intended major it would benefit me to take courses that were important to what I wanted to write. I took history classes, psychology classes, and anthropology classes with the intention of learning about subjects I could infuse into my writing.
Through my time at AOC, I sought extra assistance from the wonderful english teachers. In my senior year especially though, I sought out editing aid and extra help from Mrs. Blake who has since left. We worked through drafts and slowly improved any areas in my writing we felt needed it.
DURING MY COLLEGE CAREER
As a screenwriting major, I take all give or take one class in film or screenwriting.
I am a member of the Woman of Cinematic Arts as well as a member of the Film and Television club on campus.
Currently, I am a member of the Mosaic Collective, which is a group that hopes to propel young screenwriters of color.
What I'm currently doing/hope to do
I plan to become a screenwriter for both television and film. Currently, I am a second year student at the University of Southern California, studying Writing for Screen and Television in the School of Cinematic Arts. By the time I graduate, I expect to have a very full portfolio and several internships under my belt. I hope to either join one of Hollywood’s prestigious writing workshops or pursue a producing masters. The dream is to one day become a showrunner and see my original work on streaming platforms.
How to maximize my time in high school?
Advice #1: Don’t shy away from pursuing your dream because it isn’t as practical as becoming a doctor or a teacher. Remember it’s your life and your happiness as risk. If you take the time to dedicate yourself and do the right research, your dream will become more and more feasible. If you don’t believe me ask Koegle.
Advice #2: College classes can be really scary to take alone, but the consequences of choosing your classes based on whether or not your friends will join you are serious. Be brave and take the classes you want with the teachers you prefer even if that means you’re alone.
Advice #3: Your English teachers are highly educated and can help you hone your writing and your craft. Feel free to ask them questions, reading suggestions, and build a working relationship. Knowing how to gain knowledge from your educators, including those at COC is a valuable tool once you move on to your higher institution.
Advice #4: Learn how to balance your workload and create your own freetime. There are a lot of life lessons you miss out on when you’re always stuck inside studying. Investing in your education is important, but so is getting to know you.
Advice #5 The most important thing you can show on a college application is not your GPA or your standardized test scores, it’s who you are and that you know what you have to offer. Make sure your classes show a little of you. REMEMBER: It’s not a formula, it’s authenticity.