The Upcoming Layno Prod


Brandon Young, Creative Arts Editor

It takes intelligence, good morale….and a sick beat to get recognized nowadays!

This month’s featured student is James Layno of the CAL academy.

The Filipino-American mastermind was born in Panorama City, CA on September 13, 1997. Growing up in the San Fernando Valley all his life, the 17 year old senior is aware of the prestigious educational opportunities offered in California. “Education is an opportunity not to be taken advantage of because it can positively change your life, your family’s life, and others,” James stated.

His dream school is the University of Southern California, and his goal is to major in music management, “They have an outstanding music program that incorporates recording studios and working with others in the music industry. Plus, it’s in the urban area of Los Angeles, so I am exposed to a large and ethnically diverse group of students.”

How does James plan on getting into such a university?  His non-weighted 4.2 GPA and first attempted 1670 SAT score are only two of the impressive qualities he possesses. His list of AP courses taken and musical abilities are only the beginning.

James clearly has a strong passion for music, but what are his motives for being so successful in high school? James says, “I started making my own beats, but wanted to take it to a professional level where I can expand that knowledge in college. If I do well in high school, the more likely I’ll be able to get a scholarship.”

James also stresses that his family and friends play a vital role in his schooling, “Family and friends are always there to support and critique me in order for me to progress. If I ever become famous, I will definitely give back to my family, friends, and community.”

His third motive is the youth of today and the youth of the future, “I want to inspire and teach the youth that with hard work, patience, and creativity, you can create opportunities in life that you never had before. You’ll grow more mature; yet, paradoxically, you’ll have both the happiness and imaginative thinking of a child. My advice for the youth is to challenge themselves in a systematic institution of education by asking themselves, ‘Are the things I’m doing in high school right now going to lead me into something that I’ll love and be happy doing after high school?’ If the answer is no,  check yourself. Money shouldn’t be the determining factor of success, but happiness. These motives may or may not apply to you, but know that it’s leading to my happiness.”

James has more than just school and music on his mind. He also loves drawing flash painting graffiti. Some of his work is hung on the walls of classrooms. But, he also enjoys playing basketball with his friends and family. Be sure to pass him the ball when he is open for that three!

James commented on how thankful he is to possess such intelligence and character, “Even though people acknowledge and praise me for my talents and academic abilities, just know that I wouldn’t have them without God.” If you wanted more personal advice from this scholar, well you are in luck. James firmly stated, “Be the odd one out.”