Student Showcase: Brigitte Gong
April 8, 2020
Brigitte Gong is a fifth-year sociology student and the president of NUTV. She is a double Taurus, and a big believer in the Oxford comma. She is currently trying to watch 52 films directed by women this year and has seen The Farewell seven times. She loves breakfast food, a good Spotify playlist, and her trusty 35mm camera, Steve.
Photo by Nadia Naeem
Editor’s Note: These responses have been edited for length and clarity.
How have you impacted the arts? How have the arts impacted you?
As the president of NUTV, I've helped create a student filmmaking community at Northeastern. This community is also where I've made most of my friends and creative partnerships. On a broader level, the arts have largely informed my personality and what career I hope to pursue.
What have you learned from being the president of one of the most popular arts-focused clubs on campus?
A lot! I think the most important and universal lesson I've learned is just to clearly communicate your own goals as a leader, so that your fellow eboard members understand your vision and everyone can be on the same page when it comes to making big decisions. Obviously this won't always be possible, but in the cases where people have disagreements, hearing everyone out and trying to understand how to incorporate their ideas into what you see as "the big picture" can really be helpful. Other times, it's more helpful to stand your ground in the decisions you've made and trust that it's the best one for the club. Knowing when to use which approach is hard, but it helps when you have people on your eboard whose opinions you trust! Also, running a club is much harder than people give credit for. It's essentially another job, and there are a lot of moving parts to consider.
Photos by Nadia Naeem
Why is it important for you to teach video production techniques and develop a community through NUTV?
It's important for me personally because I've benefited from the community at NUTV so much. When I first joined, I was a very intermediate-level filmmaker. I knew how to use a camera and edit but had never worked on anything narrative. I learned a lot from just observing other people and was lucky to befriend members whose work I really admired, and those people were instrumental in helping me develop not only my technical skills, but also my voice and style when it came to filmmaking. Given how much I got out of the club, it only feels right to give that back to new members as much as possible. Additionally, the people I've met through NUTV have truly been some of my closest friends in college, and I know how important it is for people to find a space where they can feel comfortable as themselves and as creators, especially since making art with people can be a very vulnerable experience, so fostering that kind of community was also very important to me.
As an aspiring filmmaker, what are a few goals you want to accomplish?
I have two ideas currently for feature-length films I want to write and direct, but I have no experience writing a screenplay that long, so I'm in no rush to do those things just yet. In addition to that, I want to be a producer and help other people execute their ideas. I've found that that is really one of my favorite parts of being in NUTV, just helping other people put together a video of which they can be proud.