Entertainment industry brings hope for future alumni

By Sami Godowsky
April 16, 2009

Patrick McGowan

Cabrini is home to many aspiring entertainers, as well as alumni that have achieved fame.

Cabrini offers several classes that benefit students that may want to pursue a career in the entertainment industry, such as radio broadcasting, acting, advanced acting and video production.

Joe Zahn, 2008 graduate, not only is a DJ, but runs his own DJing company known as DJZmusic.

Zahn has worked at big events such as the “MTV Video Music Awards” held in Las Vegas, NV.

“DJing opened my eyes to beat-making and producing. It is because of my beat-making abilities that I was able to work my way in with a local artist by the name of Jet Phynx to opening for Flo Rida and DJing the VMA After Party in Vegas,” Zahn said.

Zahn has a lot of plans for the future; he plans to expand his business by supplying clients with everything they would need to host a party including photo/videographer props, prizes and other services at a wholesale cost. Zahn also wants to incorporate a fundraising service primarily for elementary schools.

“This fundraiser would be a sponsored trivia contest utilizing questions from the school’s curriculum, for every question a child gets correct their sponsor will donate X amount of money,” Zahn said.

So how did Cabrini prepare him for the entertainment industry?

“My major at Cabrini was in elementary education. Much of the information I learned in so many of my classes was how to keep children engaged. This is a vital tool when DJing children’s parties, school dances and Bah Mitzvahs,” Zahn said.

Another alumn from Cabrini who is currently working her way up into the entertainment industry is Diana Ashjian, who graduated from Cabrini in 2006. Currently Ashjian is working towards getting her master’s degree in theater.

“I felt that the communication department prepared me for the entertainment industry by really just pushing me outside of my comfort zone. I felt encouraged to do things I never knew I was capable of, like manage a team and write about things for which I felt compassion,” Ashjian said.

There are undergraduate students at Cabrini that are interested in going in the entertainment industry when they graduate as well.

“My ultimate goal is to win an Oscar for best actress,” Janene Gibbons, senior English and communication major, said.

Here at Cabrini, Gibbons has been involved in radio, video, journalism, creative writing, behind the scenes and crew work. Gibbons also produces her own talk show at Cabrini.

“I am an executive producer for my own talk show now and it literally gives me a natural high,” Gibbons said.

With all Gibbons’ experiences at Cabrini in the entertainment field, what are her plans for after graduating this May?

“I hope to get a job in something I love. I recently applied to the Walnut Street Theater in Philadelphia. The position sounds perfect for me. After saving up my money for a year, I plan to move to Los Angeles, Calif., get an agent and start auditioning,” Gibbons said.

Sami Godowsky

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