Last year I applied to the AWM scholarship without thinking I would be one of the privileged recipients. When I did get it, I didn’t expect the award and attending the Genii Awards Ceremony would have such an impact on my career once I graduated college. After the Ceremony I was approached by Larisa Montelindo (she’s been a role model and mentor ever since), who works for CBS2/KCAL9 news. She suggested I apply for the News Apprenticeship position at the station. A couple of months later the station’s News Director interviewed me and I got the job.
I’ve been the CBS2/KCAL9 News Apprentice since August of 2012. I’ve worked the assignment desk, written stories, and am currently training to produce. I’ve also been very fortunate to meet amazing individuals -- professionals who have mentored me throughout my apprenticeship. They have become a very important part of my life. Because of this I can say without any doubt, the AWM scholarship opened the door to this once of a lifetime opportunity that has forever changed my life. Thank you, AWM.
-Yoselin Montes-Castillo, Bachelor of Arts, Television and Journalism, California State University, Northridge, 2012
In the year since I received the Alliance for Women in Media Scholarship from the Southern California Chapter, I have been actively pursuing my goal of becoming a working screenwriter in Hollywood. The AWM scholarship has helped alleviate some of the financial strain of graduate school, and has allowed me to focus on my classes rather than the date I will begin repaying my student loans.
The scholarship also provided me with the opportunity to become part of a valuable network of men and women who have already broken into the entertainment industry. As I've learned from my time working at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, networking is one of the most efficient ways to turn career goals into real-life achievements.
Being a 2012 scholarship recipient has been not only rewarding during my time as a student, but also hopes to be a mutually beneficial relationship after graduation. My short film, "The Tent" is currently playing at various festivals and I recently finished my first pilot, a drama called "Showcase," which details the behind the scene tensions of a 50s game show.
- Kelli Johnson, Masters of Fine Arts , Screenwriting, University of Southern California, 2012