All of the lights: Step into the spotlight and take a place with PEG

Artists and hopefuls across the world dream of a way to enter the entertainment industry and do what they love. There is no one right answer, but there is Georgia State’s Panther Entertainment Group.

Panther Entertainment Group is a Georgia State organization that offers a livewire of the entertainment industry for students to gain knowledge and more importantly, experience.

Derek Jackson, the President of PEG, began his role last semester. Before that, PEG mirrored its part of the national organization, MEISA, The Music and Entertainment Industry Educators Association. During that time, students would have the opportunity to speak with industry professionals on an intimate level. However, Jackson felt that experience should be gained through PEG as well.

“The members were some of the most informed and knowledgeable students on campus in regards to how the industry works,” Jackson said. “However, I personally feel that best education is offered through experience. When I became President I also added ‘facilitate student performance opportunities’ to this list of our priorities.”

Members of the group get to speak and network with professionals and are given the platform to become the entertainer they want to be.


Nai Br.XX and Sensei Bueno perform at the courtyard’s main stage.

What You Can Expect

PEG meets twice a month to discuss collaborative projects for the members, current events in the local entertainment industry, new internship opportunities and meet and greets with experts that sometimes visit. The events that PEG coordinates are also gone over. They are currently attempting to meet more and be more open in communicating with everyone, potentially via Periscope.

According to Jackson, PEG’s members either can be active or passive. Active members participate behind the scenes in the work and the production.

“Those members are the key members who are trust and assigned the tasks of maintaining relationships with our list of industry professionals that support our campaigns,” Jackson said. “They benefit on the business side of the industry.”

The passive affiliates in PEG aren’t engaged in the production aspect, but they choose PEG to benefit from general information and networking.

“PEG is intended to act as somewhat of an agency for the artist that we choose to endorse,” Jackson said. “They have the benefit of receiving performance and branding feedback from our dedicated active members and participating professionals.”

The most notable public presence PEG has on Georgia State campus comes from the performances students have caught during courtyard time on the main wooden stage. The most recent performance that took the stage was Nai Br.XX and her producer, Sensei Bueno.

“PEG only recently became a vehicle for student performers. Our courtyard shows are doing a lot for the notoriety of our entertainers of campus,” Jackson said.

The greatest efforts for PEG are going towards making the courtyard shows more impressive and more frequent artist auditions being held to add to PEG’s list of entertainers.


More to Come

Panther Entertainment Group strives to be a group for professionals but for the benefit of the entertainers.

“We’re currently seeking members interested in the areas of film, fashion, graphics and dance. Professionals in these fields would allow us to quickly expand the frequency of our events,” Jackson said.

During PEG’s courtyard presences, there is usually a sign-up sheet. Those who sign receive exclusive information about things like upcoming auditions and shows that PEG might be doing, along with information on becoming an active member..

“The idea is that entertainers that see our entertainers go, ‘I wish that was me.’ They should have every opportunity to do so,” Jackson said. “By having our sign up sheets at our performances, we believe that we can capture more interested parties.”

Amongst all the efforts within the larger entertainment industry, Panther Entertainment Group’s main goal is still Georgia State based, by creating a collective and resource for the students.

“PEG’s ultimate goal is to establish a concrete community for the entertainers of Georgia State,” Jackson said. “Our hope is that by establishing full scale production and marketing campaign behind the quality performers that we define, we can create a legitimacy with our productions whose popularity will surpass the students of Georgia State, and attract attention from all over Atlanta.”

PEG’S goals remain local and ambitious at the same time. With hopes of expanding and growth, Jackson is looking for PEG to be a common connection with all of the organizations setting up shop at Georgia State.

“When we become more fluid in our execution and when we prove ourselves to be a force in regard to producing professional industry level events, we will seek expansion to the point where we can be the go-to organization for campus groups,” Jackson said. “We will be the organization that provides entertainment for their events and their entertainment booking in order to give our qualified, student, performers maximum visibility.”


How to Join

Students can join by going to PEG’s orgsync and coming to a meeting to discuss where their interest lie and where they could be of use.

Jackson cautions that all students looking to join should expect for PEG to mimic the standards of the actual industry with respect to the time and the responsibility.

“If you succeed in our organization, without the motivation of payment, the industry will recognize your ability to succeed, by any means necessary, of your own free will, dedication and merit.” Jackson said.


Nai Br.XX and Sensei Bueno perform at the courtyard’s main stage.

Industry Advice

Whether you are a rapper, a manager, a singer, an artist or a dancer, Derek Jackson has some advice for you.

“My advice to everyone, including the members of PEG, has always been the following: Continue to always learn and allow yourself to experience. things change, so your ability to learn will be the difference between getting lucky and having a career in this industry,” Jackson said. “Knowing how to learn means that change and circumstance can not define your success. Most importantly, understand and internalize the fact that your time and opportunity is right here, right now. There’s nothing that can truly “stop” you. Only obstacles that can “challenge” you. Don’t be afraid of speaking. Be afraid of not having anything to say.”