ETC: The social network

In Features

In most cases, social networking involves a laptop, a cropped picture of yourself and a list of things you “like.”

In the Entertainment and Tourism Club’s case, social networking involves mingling at mixers, TV tapings, award shows and industry panels with working professionals, and shaking hands instead of sending friend requests.

Every Monday night ETC members fill a small conference room in College Park, gathering around a large table discussing various planning tactics, events, new ideas and ways to critique the image and future events of the club.

ETC was founded six years ago and comprised only of students in the entertainment studies concentration.

As time passed and the Entertainment and Tourism program grew, the club expanded into other segments supporting students from all fields in the Colleges of Business and Communications and also went from three members to 130 in the past four years.

Taylor Somera, 21, president of ETC, said their main goal is to help students interact with working professionals and other students.

“We post events on campus for students to network at and meet professionals in different industries,” said Somera. “Each month we focus on different industries; we’ve had sports panels, TV and film is coming up, and other events as well.”

ETC offers eight panels and a mixer every year while hosting fun events like their upcoming LA Clippers game for Cal State Fullerton Night April 2.

Anne Pelczar, the vice president of relations and a communications major, feels these events are crucial for students who aren’t sure what they want to do yet.

“They are certainly beneficial for entertainment students since most of what we do is geared toward all kinds of entertainment. Our sports panels cover entertainment, as do the music, TV and film, or special events panels,” said Pelczar.

Students also get the opportunity to hear from CSUF alumni who are now involved in the entertainment industry during Communications Week, which begins April 25.

“We bring out CSUF alumni who are in the ETC industry to talk to students about what CSUF students can do and allow them to mingle,” Somera said.

ETC allows students to see a wide spectrum of various job opportunities in the entertainment industry, a perk they may not get on their own.

“Our club offers the best chance to learn about all the fields within the entertainment industry and many positions within several fields,” Pelczar said. “Our panelists include everyone from accountants over marketing managers to producers or catering managers; literally everything gets covered during the year.”

Joining ETC has made a lasting impression on all of the members, like Paul Gauci, 22, vice president of ETC and a communications major.

“I would probably be totally lost and worried graduating right now if I wouldn’t have joined ETC,” said Gauci. “I probably wouldn’t have any idea what I wanted to do or have any contacts to hit up when I graduate.”

ETC encourages students to get involved and take advantage of the wonderful opportunities they plan.

They also ask any student with ideas relating to the club to come talk to them; they are always looking for creative strategies.

Anyone can join and as a member, the club emails students with weekly internship updates and fun opportunities to be a part of, like TV tapings where students caravan to Los Angeles to be a part of a studio audience.

Above all, students get the opportunity to become part of the campus.

“Every student should be involved in extracurricular activities,” Pelczar said. “It’s a way to get involved on campus and actually make it your home; it’s a good way to find friends on (a) campus as large as ours.”

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