The University has about 30 student business societies and service groups that delve into the role business has in various industries. The Business in Entertainment Society (BIES) focuses on the entertainment industry, one of the sectors hit the hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic. Like the industry itself, BIES has had to adjust its mode of operation over the past year in order to continue.
The purpose of BIES is to provide connections and opportunities for students who want to work in the entertainment and sports industries. The club is split up into sections for sports and for film and music. Every week, the club sends out a newsletter containing links to internships in sports and entertainment, news events and a list of pertinent events students can attend.
In the Fall 2020 semester, BIES had numerous guest speakers who shared their knowledge and gave students the opportunity to ask questions. Before COVID-19, BIES would have speakers in person at Bartley Hall or the Finneran Pavilion, but these conferences now take place over Zoom. Recently, BIES brought on Tommy Monks, an Account Manager at TikTok, as well as David Quintanilla, a Remote Operations Coordinator at ESPN (working on the production side). Both individuals are Villanova alumni.
Toward the end of last semester, BIES also had its first panel featuring three recent Villanova graduates who work at locations like Madison Square Garden and Prudential Center with major sports teams, such as the New Jersey Devils and the Philadelphia 76ers.
Sophomore Noah Swan, the BIES President, noted how the club is trying to build out its network. Officers schedule speakers by reaching out via LinkedIn or by working with Michelle Galloway, who is the Associate Director of Professional Development for the University.
BIES has as many as 30-40 students attending each of its virtual events and is looking to expand further.
“We have been shifting gears these past few months,” Swan said. “We brought on some new executive board members. We want to be more organized, and we want to get more students involved.”
Indeed, BIES brought on a sizable amount of officers. Junior Nicole Targia and sophomore Jonathan Cosmai are Vice Presidents, sophomore Skye Archibald is the Entertainment Executive Board Chair, sophomore Stephen Terry and freshmen Matt Owens and Maddy Holobino are the Assistant Events Coordinators, junior Helen Sieggreen is the Social Media Chair, Jonah Gavino is the Graphic Design Chair and Noah Shauf is the Secretary.
BIES also has been expanding its presence on social, posting “What’s Happening Wednesdays” weekly on its Instagram account @villanovabies. Each Wednesday, the account summarizes major current events in the worlds of sports and entertainment. For example, the account’s most recent “What’s Happening Wednesday” focused on Super Bowl LV advertisements.
Going forward, BIES is looking forward to the remainder of the Spring 2021 semester and beyond. Perhaps speakers may once again step foot on campus, and BIES can re-establish an in-person presence.