Gene, welcome to the lounge! I'm loving your profile pic. It is cool to hear that you are interested in LA. There are quite a few members on the lounge who are in the same position you are. Please feel free to use the forum to get answers to any questions you might have about the profession (might want to do a search first, since i know several topics have already been discussed).
Good luck in your preparations for grad school, and thanks for joining!