The junior world wakeboarding champion started distance education in Year Seven, which allowed him to travel and train. He left school at the end of Year 10, completed a TAFE Diploma of Screen and Media and was able to jump straight into the second year of a Bachelor of Film and Screen Media Production at Griffith Film School (GFS).
Mikayo was named Vocational Student of the Year (North Coast region) at the Queensland Training Awards before his fast-track entry into GFS.
“This year I started at Griffith and got to skip straight into my second year at film school,” he said.
“I’ve found out along the way that there’s so many different pathways to uni. People shouldn’t stress so much over their ATAR, there are plenty of options that allow you to get where you want to go.”
Mikayo is enjoying being part of the filmmaking community and honing his craft.
“Every day I’m at uni, I’m enjoying it to the max,” he said.
“It’s been great to try out all the different roles in a film production — everything from camerawork to directing and producing.
“I feel like at film school, you can really find your passion.”
At 12, Mikayo began making short movies to build his social media profile and attract sponsors.
Armed with a camera and basic skills gleaned from YouTube, he documented his skills on the water and his travels on the international wakeboarding circuit.
What started as a side hustle became his primary passion.
While completing a Bachelor of Film and Screen Media Production at GFS, he is also using his filmmaking skills to build a freelance videography business, Kayo Media.
“I’ve learned that you have to push yourself and make your own opportunities — if you’re passionate about something, you need to get yourself out there and do it,” he said.
“One of the highlights was filming the Australian Red Bull riders for Jetpilot over six weeks on the Sunshine Coast and the Gold Coast. I can’t even believe that I’m getting paid for it because I would do it for free.
“Putting what I’ve learned through my time at Griffith Film School and what I know from wakeboarding, I’m able to work out the best angles and give the viewer a greater sense of the skill and effort it takes.
“One of my lecturers at film school has encouraged me to go out and practice filming a whole variety of sports, from football games to horse racing — It’s great practice to hone those camera skills in a fast-paced environment.”
You can view Mikayo’s work @kayo.media on Instagram.