Recent Grad is an Editing Intern at Own the Light
Aiyana Polk was born in Charlotte, North Carolina where she attended Stuart W. Cramer High School in nearby Belmont. Raised in a small town “where everyone knows each other,” she took a huge leap at 17 years of age and moved across the country to attend her dream school. After earning an A.A. in Digital Media from FIDM in 2021, Aiyana is currently an Editing Intern at the digital content agency Own the Light. We chatted with the new graduate to learn more about her FIDM journey.
What was your path to FIDM like? During my senior year of high school I took one of the best risks in my life: I applied to FIDM for the Digital Media program. The process was intense. My advisor gave me two weeks to create a film about myself. During those two weeks, I had to set up film dates, shoot content, and complete an essay. The process was not easy, but within two weeks from applying, I got accepted! I was overwhelmed with the best emotions ever as I had gotten into my dream school! However, I didn't realize I was gonna have to swallow the hardest pill ever and move away from my family. The distance between my family and me is 2,403 miles. It's not easy at times having your family so far, but the relationships I have developed at FIDM have been amazing and it's like my own little family in LA.
How did you become interested in Digital Media? My spark with creating films began when I was young. I would always have the camera out recording but as I got older I didn't know how to put my passion into what I wanted to do in the world. When it was time to apply for colleges I had taken the Career Quiz on the FIDM website and it recommended Digital Media. After learning about what the program offered, I was so happy because I knew that is the major for me.
Tell us about your new internship at Own the Light Productions. I'm in the editing intern program at Own the Light. In this program, I'm shadowing editors who work at Own the Light and getting experience on sets.
What are you enjoying most about this position and why? What I enjoy the most about this is having hands-on experience. This is my first time having physical teaching on editing and it's amazing because I'm learning so many new things.
How did FIDM help prepare you for your career? Before attending FIDM the only thing I knew was the basics of a camera and now I know how to use multiple Adobe apps like Premiere and After Effects. FIDM also helped me learn how to manage my time. Since FIDM is a 10-week quarter program, deadlines come fast, and in the work world you have to work according to what the client says and if they want something that night they expect it that night.
Any favorite FIDM lessons or memories? My favorite memory at FIDM was in my Intellectual Property and Law class when we had mock trials. The mock trial was about copywriting and my class got split up into two groups to represent each side. Each person in the group had a role. You had the attorneys, witnesses — everything you needed in a courtroom, but on Zoom. It was so funny to see all of us in our "positions” and calling each other out so one of us could win the case. My instructor Paige made the class fun and kept us active and it taught us a lot.
What are your ultimate career goals? My ultimate career goals are to stay true to myself and to learn. Staying true to yourself is the most important because this industry is so big and anything can influence you, so it's important to have that balance and be you! Learning is another goal for me because there are so many things out there to learn and every day there is something new.
Anything else you'd like to share? If you can dream you can achieve it!
Keep up with Aiyana on Instagram @Aiyana_Polk.