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Summer School in Los Angeles

Alice Silva 2
As part of Brunel’s mobility and employability initiative, Alice Silva was one of two final year students who had the chance to attend summer school in LA. The scheme was an international collaboration between Brunel, York University in Toronto, and Emerson College in Boston. Students spent four weeks living, studying, and making films in the heart of Hollywood, based at Emerson’s LA campus on famous Sunset Boulevard. Here is Alice’s account of that experience. 


From a young age the magic of film and tv production has always been a huge fascination for me and being able to study Film at Brunel has so far been an incredible journey. During the month of July I was given the incredible opportunity to study in LA, experiencing the heart of Hollywood and all things Film at first hand. 


We were able to experience what it was like to study and start a career in LA and this gave us an insight of how it would be like to live half way across the world. All these things would not be otherwise possible unless we made the active decision to leave our life here in the UK and set out to start from scratch in Los Angeles. 


The module was filled with so many fun things, with an equal balance of theory and practical, feeding into each other and allowing us to take on fun activities and socialise with people from the United States, as well Canada, the partner universities from the course. Each week was planned so that we would have enough free time to explore the city, have contact hours, guest speakers from the industry, and fun field trips that would allow us to apply what we had learned both from Brunel and from our lectures at Emerson College. 


Having this experience has allowed me to connect with people within the industry and, hear from those who have experienced starting their career in LA. This has allowed me to come back and prepare myself for my final year with a clearer goal, as well as a realistic one. I’ve been able to make a plan of how I hope to achieve that goal after university. 


Having the honour of being picked is something I will never be able to fully show my gratitude for and I owe the film studies department, specifically Niki Ashby and Sean Holmes, so much for making one of my biggest dreams come true.