BOP&TB: How did you get involved with the Acuvue program?
Tyler Blackburn: Well, really, it was like, the campaign was brought to my attention and once I got the explanation of what it was, I said, “Absolutely.” All of this is still pretty new for me, just having success in something I’ve wanted to do for as long as I can remember, so I just felt like now that I’m doing what I love, I’m also a public voice. And I felt like I wanted to use that to just spread some positivity.
BOP&TB: The girl you mentored wanted to be an actress, so that sounds like a good fit. Did you get any input in picking who you would mentor?
Tyler Blackburn: It was definitely fortunate pairing. I definitely spoke to Acuvue about it and said that I would love for it to be someone who was interested in being an actor or actress. I didn’t get to look through all of the videos and decide, but I had a little bit of input and it was a great fit. She and her mom came here together and they both were just so awesome and inspiring for me because it was a little humbling watching someone’s dreams start to become realized. I was like, “Oh gosh, don’t take anything for granted, because it’s like these are the moments that really, really matter.”
BOP&TB: Totally. Maybe someday you’ll see her on TV.
Tyler Blackburn: I’ll be like, “That’s Courtney!” It’s so cool. She literally just – I was more nervous than her for some of it, I’m not even joking. Or at least she didn’t show it at all and I was like, sweating. It was a lot of responsibility, you know? Mentoring someone, you’ve gotta give them the right kind of advice and it was really fun.
BOP&TB: What was the most challenging part of being a mentor?
Tyler Blackburn: To be honest, I think the most nerve-wracking part was that she really just kind of waited for me to give her some advice. She didn’t ask a whole lot of questions and that was the scariest part. I just had to be prepared to tell her everything. She was just literally like a sponge. She just soaked it all up and I was making sure I gave her the right advice because this is someone’s life and someone’s dream and you know, it’s a fragile thing.
BOP&TB: Have you ever had a mentor who gave you really great advice? Did you pass any of it down to Courtney?
Tyler Blackburn: Nothing specific. I feel like everyone is an individual, so one thing that works for one person, might not work for another. So I think another part of the mentorship was that it had to be strategized. It was like this has to be vague enough to where you can basically take it for what you think it means and also have it really hit home too. But I mean I definitely had people who gave me some great advice and things that really worked for me. And I still do. I’m still going through life, trying to figure it all out. I think it’s really awesome to have people that you can talk to and look up to.