If you have an iPad (I don't yet, but think it's a good idea), that's also a great way to show off your portfolio. Just pull it out when you meet people and let them swipe through some examples of your work and shots of projects you worked on. Just imagine running into someone who is in a role to hire people at his studio, and being able to hand him a short video of Shattered Origins gameplay to watch right there on the spot. The chance that he'll actually see your work goes up 1000000%.
No need to wait until you're done with school. Here in SF there are a number of graphics-related meetup groups and talks that are attended by people in all stages of their career, and I'd imagine that LA has just as many if not more. All you need to do is say you're a freelancer.
Very nice card. I should make one for myself someday as well after school. One never knows when it may be needed.
By the way, I'm swinging through your neck of the woods in June for E3.