Name: Jessica Stettler
Hometown: Atlanta, Georgia
College: University of Georgia
When did you move to LA?
What made you want to move to LA?
I really wanted a change of pace from Georgia. After I graduated I wasn't sure exactly what I wanted to do or where I wanted to live but knew I already felt bored of Atlanta. Even though the city is huge, it felt like I knew everyone since I grew up there and went to college just an hour-ish away from home. Originally I just came to LA for an 8 week internship with no intention of staying here long-term, however the stars aligned and my internship asked if I would stay and work for them (for actual money!) and the friends I made out here invited me to sublease a room in their house in the West Hollywood Hills. "Hi, would you like to live in perma-perfect weather surrounded by beautiful people?" Le duh, I went with it and YOLO'ed my face off.
What was the most challenging part of the move to LA?
Finding normal roommates/affordable places to live was definitely very challenging, to the point where I almost moved home because of it! I've had my fair share of horrible roommates and interesting living arrangements but it makes for good stories now, that's for sure. One of the first places I lived (post Hollywood Hills house) was a 2 bed/1 bath apartment with five other people. FIVE. That is NOT a typo. It was super crazy and I'm sure we all felt annoyed at the lack of privacy, but it was what we could afford at the time. We lovingly referred to our apartment as the "LA Orphanage" since we were all transplants trying to find our way in this huge city.
How did your job hunt go down?
As I had mentioned, the event marketing company I interned for ended up hiring me on just to finish the projects I had been helping them with. Through them I made a new contact who worked for AEG and she referred me for a job in sales, so I was able to make a seamless transition from one job to the next. Once I decided sales was not for me, I started dabbling in other things... anything really to make money so I could continue to live here because I wasn't ready to leave! I was briefly a club promoter, a promotional model, a nanny, and a gymnastics coach to high-profile clients (we're talking A listers and I couldn't even handle it). Things were beginning to be a little too LA and I think my parents were about to give up on me ever having direction or a real job, but I eventually started doing social media as a freelance consultant and decided I wanted to pursue it as my career. A couple interviews later, I landed a job at Viking Cruises and have been there for four years now. The job has taught me a lot and it has allowed me the opportunity to travel internationally to cover social media for company events. I have also continued to freelance on the side off and on, but I am really excited to finally be in a place where I have a consistent stream of clients. I am now focusing on growing my business and, hopefully, one day being my own boss.
What area are you living in?
I currently live in Brentwood which I LOVE. It's convenient for me because I can easily hop on the 405 to get to the valley where I currently work. It's also only a nice 5 mile run down San Vicente to the ocean (running down San Vicente is a thing in Brentwood, everyone does it and it's great for babe watching!)
What's your favorite thing about Los Angeles?
My favorite thing is that there is really something for everyone and always something to do no matter what you are interested in! You really have to try hard to be bored. There are so many different neighborhoods with different things to offer. It's also really easy to meet people here as most are transplants looking for friends or looking to network.
Tell me your favorite 3 spots to recommend to new Angelenos:
1) I am OBSESSED with Malibu Country Mart! It is a family-run business, just off the PCH right before Pepperdine, and it is such a beautifully quaint spot. The food is delicious and it's GREAT for celeb watching. Beach is right across the street, Malibu State Creek Park is just up the hill and there's great shops all around. It is my heaven.
2) Richard Simmons's aerobic studio, Slimmons, is located in Beverly Hills and they offer classes, taught by RICHARD himself, three times a week for a very affordable $12/per class! They can get quite full, but they are the BEST time I have ever had working out... it is mostly silly dance moves, but it really is a workout and Richard is hilarious of course. He stays after class to take photos with everyone so it's like a workout and a new FB prof pic in one!
3) Soul Cycle is a great workout and probably one of the most LA-esque at that. The teachers are hot and welcoming, the classes are SO fun and it's unlike any other workout I've ever done. Also great for celeb watching!
Any advice you would give to someone who is planning to make the move to LA?
Hustle 24/7... this city is all about networking and if you meet the right person, they may be able to help you get your foot in the door with your career. Even if you are at a bar with friends on a weekend, still actively try to meet people and be outgoing because the more contacts you have the better.
Follow Jessica and her LA life: @thefetchbetchla