This year on LEAD Cape Town, we were introduced to a really special person. We got to watch this student conquer his greatest fear, heights, by jumping the tallest bungee jump in the world after adamantly swearing he couldn’t do it, leaving the group in an uproar of cheering and encouragement. We got to watch this student create awesome videos of the service, adventures, and beautiful everyday moments, capturing so many fun and meaningful angles of our trip. Most importantly, we got to know a genuinely great guy, and we’ve made him a part of our team. LeadAbroad: meet one of our newest Social Media Interns, Johnny Martinez!

Johnny is our Video Intern, taking charge of the LeadAbroad Vimeo account by putting the coolest, most exciting videos from all of our trips out there for the world to see! He has such a talent and a passion, and that’s something LeadAbroad recognized in him and wanted to help him to continue to thrive. Johnny is a sophomore engineering major at Oglethorpe University, where LeadAbroad has our office! We’re lucky that we get to see him pretty often 🙂 Not only can we see Johnny in Atlanta…we’ll see Johnny on another one of our trips: GO Barcelona 2016! From Africa to Europe to behind the video camera, wherever you are, you should get to know Johnny, too. Read below to see why Johnny is such an asset to our team!

LeadAbroad: At what point on your LeadAbroad trip did you realize you wanted to stay connected to the organization?
Johnny:​​ I wanted to stay connected to the organization because LeadAbroad does a great job of getting their students to connect in a more deeper way than anyone would expect. I was able to make lifelong friendships in such a short amount of time which was amazing.

LeadAbroad: What is the coolest part of your Social Media Internship with LeadAbroad?
Johnny: ​The coolest part of my Internship with LeadAbroad is defintely making videos for them. I have always been passionate about cinematography and editing, and my intership with LeadAbroad allows me to practice that.

LeadAbroad: What do you hope to achieve through the videos you will create this year for LeadAbroad?
​Johnny: I hope to gain students’ interest in going abroad. I know how powerful videos can be, and I hope to use that power to convince every student who watches them to go abroad. I also want to improve my skills when it comes to editing!

LeadAbroad: What was your best memory from your trip this summer?
​Johnny: Definitely bungee jumping. I went onto that bridge knowing that I was ​NOT​ going to jump. But the people who were on that trip with me supported me like noone has ever done before. I knew they believed in me and I wouldn’t have jumped off that bridge without the LeadAbroad family.

LeadAbroad: What got you interested in videos/social media? Tell us about your experience in this/these field(s).
​Johnny: My freshman year in college, I entered a contest called “Campus Movie Fest.” Film has always been a passion of mine, but I never knew If I was actually good or not. So I decided to make a short film, and ended up winning at my university. The greatest part of being in the audience when my film was screening in the theatre was hearing the people’s reaction. Winning was great, but when people in the theatre were saying “Awwhh” or “Oh my god!” I knew they were enjoying the film.

Ever since I was a kid, I would always be the guy who “records everything.” I think documenting everything in our lives is so vital and important. I know when I’m old and want to explain to my kids what I was like when I was younger, I’ll have videos to back me up!

LeadAbroad: Your best piece of advice to someone who is considering staying involved after their trip abroad:
Johnny: It’s important to surround yourself with people who will make you become a better person all around, and LeadAbroad’s team is defintely a family with good values and morals that will help you grow as a leader and as a person. ​LeadAbroad is a team full of caring, loving, and genuine people that will always be there to help you!

LeadAbroad: Fill in the blank. After college, I want to:
Johnny: ​I want to be a director.

LeadAbroad: Your dream travel destination.
Johnny: ​Anywhere tropical and adventurous!

LeadAbroad: What do you love most about working with the LeadAbroad team?
Johnny: LeadAbroad’s team is so energizing and so fun to be around!

LeadAbroad: Describe your LeadAbroad experience in one word.
Johnny: ​Unbelievable.

If we’ve learned anything from Johnny, it’s to have courage, to follow your passions, and to strive for greatness! Be sure to check out our Vimeo and our website to follow the videos that Johnny produces throughout the year.

-The LeadAbroad Team