Student Julius Miller is a Reporter for Los Angeles Magazine
Born in Conroe, Texas, and raised in Northern Virginia, Julius Miller attended Annandale High School and Northern Virginia Community College prior to FIDM. He completed his Merchandising & Marketing, Professional Designation A.A., and will graduate in 2023 with his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Digital Marketing. As the Editor-in-Chief of FIDM MODE, a student-run publication on campus, Julius gained valuable experience in journalism and is now a reporter for Los Angeles Magazine. We caught up with him to learn more.
Tell us about your position at Los Angeles Magazine: I currently work as a reporter for Los Angeles Magazine, which typically entails me writing an array of stories every day. Whether it be local news, national news, or global news, I am usually covering it. I work with my editor, Joseph Kapsch, on crafting a lot of original stories as well.
Here’s some of my favorite work that I have done:
"L.A.’s Neighborhood Style: Flea Market Fashion" (with a surprise cameo from Rumer Willis)
"How a 19-Year-Old L.A. Gym Owner Survived and Thrived During the Pandemic"
"How ‘Euphoria’ Star Chloe Cherry Is Expanding Her Art Beyond the Screen"
"The Story Behind Catarina Buchatskiy Leaving Stanford for Ukraine"
How did your position as editor of MODE prepare you for this opportunity? MODE was like a catalyst in my career in journalism. I had been out of the art of journalism for quite some time, as my community college did not really offer a publication to work on. I rose from a staff writer to the Editor-in-Chief within a couple of quarters, and that taught me to always expect the unexpected! I was really happy with my position and it brought me a lot of key organizational skills in which I use today at LA Mag.
Here is MODE 18, which I worked on as Editor-in-Chief and consider to be one of my best bodies of work (with the help of an incredible team).
How has the Digital Marketing program at FIDM prepared you for the industry? A lot of the misconception about journalism today comes from the fact that publications like Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, and Elle are all still maintaining print—they are still putting out physical magazines on a monthly basis. In reality, a lot of the journalism world have been preparing—and are still preparing—for a full transition into a new era of digital media. In this, a lot of magazines and newspapers may cease their printing and opt to go online completely.
With Digital Marketing, it helped me to further my skills to utilize the online platform. Thus, I am more prepared for the journalism world of tomorrow and today.
Which high school did you attend? I attended Annandale High School in Northern Virginia and graduated in 2017. It was a great experience as I was exposed to a melting pot of different cultures; I am not sure who I would be today if I did not go to that school. I was also exposed to journalism for the first time there as I worked on the school’s publication, The A-Blast, as an entertainment editor. I want to give a shout out to Alan Weintraut, as he led the paper and was really important in my pursuit of journalism as a career.
Fun fact, Star Wars’ Mark Hamill and the Foo Fighters’ Dave Grohl also went there for a time. One time, our school security saw a random man walking outside the campus and quickly rushed over to see what was going on. They quickly dropped their act and pulled out their phones for a picture when they realized it was the ex-Nirvana drummer and Foo Fighters lead himself.
Any previous colleges? I went to a lovely community college called Northern Virginia Community College. I feel like community college gets a bad rap, but I was honestly paying less for school than any of my friends were at the time. I also had some of my best professors during my time there, and it launched my interest into politics and art history, and grew my writing skills.
Anything else you’d like to share? If you think you have a knack for writing, carry on. You may not get the first job you apply to, but you will get one. I applied to well over 300 jobs before I even got a response from someone.
Keep reading, as picking up hints of style from other authors will help you to develop your own.
Expect some criticism—for every person who loves your work you can guarantee there will be another who hates it.
Lastly, keep up with the news. It may be grim, it may be depressing, and it may be dreadful, but the concept that the “world will keep spinning” if you are negligent of it only holds so much truth. Yes, it will keep spinning, but you’ll get pulled into it all eventually. Keep your eyes on the telly and your ears on the radio.