October 22, 2020
Extracurriculars Complete CMU Experience
By Felicia Lucot
Before the pandemic changed campus operations, Remy Goldberg would cross Forbes Avenue lugging a massive keyboard. Her peers would follow suit, carrying boxes filled with props on their way to the Tepper Quad to set up for theater rehearsal.
Preparing rehearsal spaces is just part of the role of stage manager, Goldberg's previous role for Scotch 'n Soda, Carnegie Mellon University's entirely student-run theater group and one of the nation's oldest student theater organizations.
From the figure skating club to Greek life to the Kiltie Band, Carnegie Mellon offers more than 300 clubs and student organizations. Goldberg is among a cohort of students who said that getting involved outside the classroom has enhanced their CMU experience — though their experiences are different this semester due to COVID-19.
Goldberg, a rising sophomore studying chemistry, has been involved in performing arts for most of her life, but wanted step away from acting and dancing when she arrived at CMU. She came across an application for an assistant stage manager position with Scotch 'n Soda and discovered a new side of the arts, along with a new group of friends.
"I was greeted with open arms," she said. "The first moments I was there, I knew I found this group of people that I wanted to be with for the next four years."
While a highlight of joining Scotch 'n Soda has been the people she's met, Goldberg says that what she's gained both personally and professionally have been invaluable.
Goldberg is developing a new set of skills, transitioning from stage manager to public relations coordinator for the group. She handles publicity and social media for the organization, and is learning to use Adobe Creative Cloud software, things she says she wouldn't have exposure to without this role.
"I've loved every minute of it, but it's a lot of work. Making rehearsal schedules, setting up rehearsal spaces and coordinating tech week has helped me develop important organizational leadership skills," she said.
While CMU is known for its interdisciplinary academic programs, Goldberg says that students have diverse interests outside the classroom as well. In fact, most of the members of Scotch 'n Soda aren't theater majors.
"I think of CMU students as motivated people who work hard and are goal-oriented, but we still know how to have fun and get involved in things outside of academics," Goldberg said. "If you want more out of your college experience, you just have to look around."
Scotch 'n Soda's fall slot, "Behind Closed Doors," will be shown virtually November 13 and 14. Students who are on campus or learning remotely can find information on group meetings, workshops, subtroupes and how to get involved this semester on the Scotch 'n Soda website.