SFA mass media students visited the L.A. Observatory while participating in a unique "Meet the Media" class during Maymester. Students pictured, from left, are Gracy Kheshtinejad, Christine Reyes, Joey Stepniewski, Gabrielle Wesley, Thomas Martin, Iris Rios, Touré McCoy, Jordan Allen, Phyllis, Alicia Sanders, Kasi Dickerson, Alex Bellini and Robbie Key. Photo by Dr. John Allen Hendricks.

NACOGDOCHES, Texas - A group of Stephen F. Austin State University students studying mass media spent a week meeting with media professionals in Los Angeles, Calif., during Maymester.

Ten undergraduate students and three graduate students from the Department of Mass Communication participated in the "Meet the Media" class trip. All of the students are studying mass media with specialties in journalism, radio/TV, advertising or public relations. The students met with representatives from Insomniac Games, Clear Channel Radio, Los Angeles Magazine, Warner Bros., the Getty Museum and the Los Angeles Angels, according to Dr. Linda Thorsen Bond, an SFA associate professor who accompanied the students on the trip, along with Dr. John Hendricks, chair and professor of the Department of Mass Communication.

"In L.A., students learned about media, but they also learned about what it takes to rise to the top of the field," Bond said. "The students are active in all aspects of media. They write, take photos and create videos, publish blogs, and manage other social media. Some of the students work at the SFA radio and television stations or for the student newspaper and yearbook. All are making news in their own way."

Advertising major Jordan Allen said the group's visit to Warner Bros. was one of the highlights of the trip for her.

"Senior Adviser Bruce Rosenblum gave us advice on how important internships are and (shared) that even though Warner Bros. is a fun place, it's first and foremost a business," she said. "In this field, it is easy to forget that there actually is work to do because of how glamorous it can be."

Radio/TV major Thomas Martin said he most enjoyed an inspirational session with L.A. Angels representative Tim Mead.

"(He) gave us insight in regards to passion, drive and work ethic, as opposed to the technical talk we had been hearing all week about resumes and email formatting, presenting oneself, etc.," Martin said. "This showed me that wishful thinking and being in the right place at the right time can come into effect at times in this industry, as well."

For public relations minor Gabriella Wesley, the trip resulted in a new career goal.

"I found my purpose, and I knew I wanted to be a fashion and entertainment editor the moment I met the fashion editor at L.A. Magazine," she said. "I also learned that persistence and organization are key when searching for an internship. Everyone we talked to made it a point that you should always make sure you stand out from the rest."