WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif. - In any other year, they would be celebrated with pomp and circumstance, applauded, and cheered. But this year because of social distancing, schools aren’t able to hold graduation ceremonies. So Good Day LA is honoring graduating seniors from the ‘Class of Covid-19’ with a new segment called FOX 11’s Grad Standouts.
Joe Matthews is a Senior from Oaks Christian School in Westlake Village. He did a powerful documentary about Ivan Jepsen, a Ugandan orphan found in a trash bag as a newborn with his umbilical cord still attached and adopted by a local family. Joe and Ivan met at camp in the 4th grade and quickly became best friends. Four years ago Joe started working on a documentary about Ivan’s life and even traveled to Uganda with Ivan to meet his family. It’s a story of best friends graduating together socially distanced after starting life worlds apart.
Joe’s documentary From the Land of In-Between hits iTunes this month. Joe says he’s planning to study film at Chapman University. He’s following in the footsteps of his famous grandfather, Michael Landon, from Little House on the Prairie. Ivan is planning to study business at Grand Canyon University. He says he wants to build an orphanage in Africa.
If you'd like to nominate a Grad Standout, visit Dan Cohen's Facebook page for details.