It is my 13th year of teaching at Stonehill, and, on Wednesday, March 6th, 2013, I had one of my best days here. Well, not quite “here,” but in Los Angeles. That evening, I had dinner at my good friend Matt’s restaurant, Zach’s Café, with Stonehill’s current LA interns, and we were joined by 10 young Stonehill alums living and working in LA: Ally, Janelle, Chris, Christine, Nicole, Jenne, Traca, Matt, Kaitlyn, and Neal. Some of them have been here a few weeks, some a few years; Ally, who, along with Janelle, Lauren, and Alex, made up the first cohort of LA interns, came here in 2010 and never left! What made the dinner so special to me was, simply, seeing all of them pursuing their dreams out here in LA. It gave me a great sense of satisfaction and, yes, pride.
I had a chance to reminisce with Chris about our first meeting—a dinner with interns in NY—and the amazing series of events that followed it. As incredible as it sounds, the LA internship program, which Stonehill introduced in the fall 2010 semester can be traced back to that spring 2009 dinner. And Chris has gone from Stonehill student to valued collaborator to, today, Stonehill employee. Along with his job at Universal, as Stonehill’s LA Liaison, Chris works with our LA interns and continues to move forward the program he played a vital role in jumpstarting years ago.
I also had a chance, privately, to sit back and soak it all in. Seeing the alums and interns sharing a meal, talking shop, catching up, making new connections, or just joking and laughing together made for the perfect ending to a fantastic LA trip. I had to take a moment to acknowledge how good it felt to play a role in it all. How often do we actually get a chance to do that? So, thank you, LA interns and alums, for giving me that chance. -RL