To Be @ EGD: Freddy Beltran
Updated: Mar 23, 2021
Written By: Max Mitchelson
Edited By: Mary Joaquin
To highlight the individual work of our dedicated volunteers, members, and staff, we are giving them a chance to speak. We talk about their experiences here at EGD. and what it means to them.
This week we interviewed EGD Hunter College club treasurer Freddy Beltran.
Max Mitchelson: Can you introduce yourself and talk a little bit about what your role is at EGD?
Freddy Beltran: My name is Freddy Beltran. I am currently the treasurer of the EGD Club. I mostly make sure that we have the budget available. I also moderate channels now and make sure people aren’t doing anything terrible.
Max: How did you first get involved, and what was your first experience with EGD?
Freddy: I learned about the club through Ben. I’ve known him since high school. But at first, I was pretty hesitant to join the club because I was just kind of an introvert at the time. I just didn't want to do anything. I was just kind of in a mood.
But I agreed, and as time went on, I started hanging out at the club more and more. And from there, I met Kyra, tried to help here and there as I got more invested in the club.
Max: Do you have any memorable experiences from your time at EGD? And what have you learned from working with the organization?
Freddy: A memorable moment was going to the first Friday Night [Mashups] (FNM)* as Hall, in that big auditorium area. And basically, what I saw was just how big of a community that we had. And it was wonderful to see so many people in one area.
I got to interact with so many other people, people who were generally interested in trying to make games, people who were dissecting games, and I fell in love with the club even more.
It made me want to invest myself more into the club, even though my major has nothing to do with games. I still heavily enjoy games—it’s probably my favorite hobby. So it was very interesting to see the process of how games are made and how invested people were in making games.
Max: Would you say EGD changed your perspective of how you think about games?
Freddy: 100 percent, yeah.
Max: Do you think EGD is a good resource for people in a similar position to you, maybe they're not in a major that has nothing to do with games, but they are interested in the medium?
Freddy: 100 percent! Especially since we have GSP [Game Studio Program], which allows you to be in a group of people and help create games. We also have tournaments too. If you're a fan of League of Legends, Overwatch, Valorant, or CSGO, we support all of those, and we want to be more competitive with those as well.
We host tabletop games, even casual multiplayer games. Of course, we also have FNMs, which allows people to either show off their games or talk about games and get everyone in the general mood to be more interested more about video games.
I think the club is a perfect example of how to get somebody invested without being overly complicated. You can choose one thing, like GSP. Then you slowly learn as you go about how to create games, or maybe you go to [FNM], they’re very simple—you come, hang out, and check out the games.
I've seen people bring their projects over to see if people want to play. It's very nice to see people give good criticism of the game instead of just saying it's bad or good. It’s nice to see people try to find more interest in the club itself.
Max: Before, you mentioned you were more of an introvert when you first joined. Do you feel like working in the organization has really changed you moving forward or even opened up new opportunities?
Freddy: When I first entered the club, I joined a somewhat competitive League team. At the time, that's what helped me start interacting with more people because I had to. From there, I started meeting more people, which allowed me to kind of like, branch out and talk more and just find more people.
There were always a ton of people in the club, at least when it was physically there. When we finally had our clubroom, we had more opportunities for meeting people and just talking with them. It was fantastic, and it really helped get me out of my bubble and start asking more questions.
Max: What kind of challenges have you run into working for EGD? And how have you solved those issues?
Freddy: At first, it was more not understanding the processes of the club and how it worked, so it took time to adjust. I never knew how to make a game. Before I joined the club, I basically barely did computer science stuff. So that was out of the question—I didn't want to do that.
When it came down to it, I just didn't really get how games were made. But as I spent more time in the club and looked at people's projects and saw how things work, I got more and more used to it. So now I have more of a technical knowledge of things. I don’t want to say I know how to make a game but—
Max: It's given you sort of like an insider viewpoint?
Freddy: Yeah, an insider look at how video games are made. And it's very interesting. Yeah.
Max: What kind of skills do you think you have taken away from your position?
Freddy: I’ve learned how to schedule things, how to make sure I'm on top of everything. I’ve gotten used to talking to people through outreach and email. I'm on top of people messaging them, things like that, basically making sure that things are getting done at an appropriate time.
Max: Would you recommend EGD to others? And how do you think they should get involved?
Freddy: I would recommend EGD. And I would say the best way to get into the club is probably through [FNMs]. It’s where you’ll see the most people and meet new ones. And we generally have some interesting stuff going on there, like tournaments and workshops that are either specific to video games or how-to stuff.
We even have workshops that teach more technical stuff, like making music or even how to use Adobe. We have a bunch of things there that can help you learn new things as well as meet new people.
Max: Going off that, is there anything you found that was kind of surprising to you that EGD provides to its club members?
Freddy: We have a lot. Like GSP. I think that one was what really surprised me. It was very interesting to see GSP especially because they get to go on trips and do a bunch of things. And I think that in itself is really cool. Even if you have to pay for it.
We also have opportunities such as varsity teams. So if you want to be more in the competitive scene, we have varsity teams.
And we have an opportunities tab in EGD, which helps us a lot. If you want to get a job, people are always posting something that can help you. Or even if you want some sort of internship or some sort of career help, they can help you there.
I would say if people want to be more in the field of gaming or you want a job, then [going through] the opportunities tab is great. GSP is great for if you want to build a portfolio, because you will always be making games, especially because [it is a part of] GSP. I think that's fantastic.
Max: Why do you think EGD is important?
Freddy: I think it's important because some people don't believe that this type of creative work is necessary or warranted when it clearly is.
People enjoy games or want to play games, so I think EGD is important because it helps bring to light that people are genuinely interested in this field you should put more attention to it.
EGD helps get that attention and help people out, get them more invested. I think that's a great thing.
*Friday Night Mashups are currently a weekly Discord-exclusive event.
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