Forget backstabbing, new group encourages success through camaraderie

Ed on Campus @ TCNJ (Ed@TCNJ), a new club on campus, will benefit students who aspire to become magazine editors by the year 2010.

Ed@TCNJ made its debut at the College on Sept. 20 with its first induction ceremony, which was followed by a panel discussion featuring alumni who are now working in the magazine and newspaper industry.

Among the panelists were: Pete Croatto, assistant editor at Vitamin Retailer Magazine Inc., Sean Ryan, assistant editor at Real Estate New Jersey, and Elise Young, senior writer for The (Bergen) Record and freelancer for NJ Monthly. Annemarie Conte, associate editor of JANE and Joanna Saltz, deputy editor of Seventeen, were also scheduled to be part of the panel but were unable to attend.

The idea to bring Ed@TCNJ to the College was sparked by Tammy Tibbetts, junior journalism major. She first heard about the club when she discovered it from a friend who attends Syracuse University, a school which is affiliated with the national organization, Ed2010.

Tibbetts felt that it was the kind of club that students would want to take advantage of, so she set out to form a chapter at the College.

“I felt students interested in magazines could gain so much from meeting professionals and bonding with one another,” Tibbetts said. “We are so lucky to be this close to New York City, the media capital of the world, so why not take advantage of that?”

Ed2010 was originally founded in 1998 by Chandra Czape, who is currently the deputy editor of CosmoGIRL!. At the time it was founded, Czape was an assistant editor at Glamour.

The club began when she and her friends got together and routinely exchanged information regarding job openings and discussed what was going on in the industry. Ed2010 subsequently reached over a dozen cities and 22 college campuses in the United States and Canada.

After inductions at 8 p.m., there was a question-and-answer session, which was attended by both inductees and non-members who came to the event.

The panelists began by describing their experiences at the College and the job searches that followed which led them to where they are today. It was made quite clear to the journalism students that it will take a significant amount of effort and drive to achieve the career that they truly desire.

“Be prepared to walk a very twisted path before you go,” Croatto said.

Many other topics were discussed, such as the benefits of internships, the differences between newspaper writing and magazine writing, editing and freelancing.

The panelists also shared their thoughts on the pros and cons of graduate school. However, the most interesting question that Tibbetts asked the panelists was what they knew today that they wish they would have known while they were still in college. Elise Young gave some of the best advice.

“There’s no better time to have fun, to make your mistakes than right here, right now,” she said.

Ten students were inducted into Ed@TCNJ, and all of them seem excited to participate and enjoy the networking opportunities that will be given to them.

“When I heard about (Ed@TCNJ), I decided that the advice and inside look into the field that this club is offering was invaluable and I couldn’t pass it up,” Kristen Pihokker, junior English elementary education major, said.

Tibbetts pointed out that meeting new contacts is not the only benefit of joining the club. She explained that it is also a club that allows students to meet people who have the same interests as they do.

Most importantly, according to Tibbetts, it encourages success in the writing industry “through camaraderie … not through ruthless competition.”

Although Tibbetts will soon be leaving for a semester abroad in Spain, vice president Donna Kardos, senior journalism major, will be taking Tibbetts’ place until her return.

The club’s upcoming activities are schedule to include guest lectures, trips to New York City magazine offices, dinners and r?sum? critiquing sessions.

For information on Ed@TCNJ, e-mail or visit the Web site at