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Beth Bingham Evans. Photo by Kelly Lacefield

A Rewarding Year

New Book, Honor for Communications Lecturer Beth Evans

April 21, 2009

By Valerie Orleans

This year is turning out to be a pretty good one for Beth Evans, lecturer in communications. And 2009 isn’t half over.

Evans co-authored with Andi Stein, associate professor of communications, a textbook, “An Introduction to the Entertainment Industry” in February.

“Writing the book came about because Andi and I kept complaining that there really wasn’t a textbook that focused on the growing entertainment industry,” Evans said. “Most of the texts focused on marketing in the industry and that really wasn’t our focus. We were more concerned with writing, looking at different segments of the industry and how they operate and providing a broader overview.”

As Evans and Stein discussed the problem, they came to a solution: write the book they wanted. They contacted Peter Lang Publishing in New York and received a contract. So, in 2008, they began writing their book.

While many entertainment industry textbooks stopped at TV and movie production, Evans and Stein expanded beyond that, looking at the impact of theaters, museums, amusement parks, sports, travel and tourism and casinos.

“We also wanted to address the consolidation of the media,” Evans said. “There’s so much happening right now — social media, new media — there’s a lot of adaption and change. Many owners, such as Disney, have multiple interests, such as TV, radio, theme parks, movies and merchandising.

“There is so much focus on how people spend their free time and what they seem to want is a well-produced entertainment product.”

On the heels of the book publication, Evans was honored with the Distinguished Service to Journalism Education Award from the Journalism Association of Community Colleges. Each year, JACC presents this award to someone who has contributed significantly to community college journalism education. Among past recipients are the former editor of the Los Angeles Times, investigative journalists, political leaders and others.

“What is especially gratifying is that they name the annual scholarships in your honor,” Evans said. “When I was in Sacramento to receive my award, I was able to present the scholarship checks to this year’s recipients.”

On campus, Evans has coordinated the JACC Southern California Write-offs, a two-day event where community college students come to campus to learn more about journalism and communication careers. Prior to joining the faculty, the Cal State Fullerton alumna spent several years working as a news anchor for Fox-Channel 11, Orange County News Channel, “E” Entertainment Network and other media outlets.

“It was a great life — lots of travel and high-profile stories,” Evans said.

But after the arrival of her two children, Evans began to look for something a little closer to home, and a job that wouldn’t require that she pack her bags and head off to a foreign country at a moment’s notice.

Tony Fellow, chair and professor of communications, was Evans’ adviser when she was working on her master’s degree, so she called and asked if there were any teaching positions available. Fortunately, there was a position for Evans — teaching in the entertainment and journalism concentrations.

“My time at Fullerton has been great,” Evans said. “I love working with the students, advising them, teaching them. I didn’t expect to fall in love with teaching but, as it turns out, that’s what happened.

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