Where Do I Go To School? An Open Letter To Prospective Music Industry Students
I, your favorite Professor Philp, was asked by the father of a potential student why his son should consider choosing William Paterson University and its Music Biz programs. My response is below, reprinted with my permission. Names of the innocent have been deleted.
I took another look at the other school’s program. The comparable William Paterson University BA program that I would suggest is our BA in Popular Music studieswith a Minor in Music Management. By doing this, he receives a full 42 credit hours in the University Core Curriculm. He also attains a comprehension of creating music by taking music theory, ear training, piano, voice, and songwriting classes.
Meanwhile, he learns the business through the Minor, focusing on personal management, current aspects of the industry, like streaming and live performance and creative revenue streams. We’re starting our own entertainment company from the ground up in the fall, so there’s the hands-on entrepreneurship component.
He can also take electives with a focus that aligns with his interests, which will most likely change slightly as he experiences getting a four-year degree. Who he is at 18-years old is very different from who he will be at 22.
This hasn’t been publicized yet, but we have also just entered into a strategic relationship with the Warner Music Group. Our potential WMG interns will receive priority over interns from other universities. Plus, we’ll have access to WMG executives and personnel to experience more of the industry from a deeper, insider perspective.
The faculty is in the industry, from adjuncts who work at SiriusXM to running the business interests of KISS, 3 Doors Down, the Dave Matthews Band, and more.
I co-host a weekly radio show called Music Biz 101 & More on WPSC: Brave New Radio, the university radio station (and voted one of the best in the country), with Dr. Steve Marcone, who runs the Music Management program. The show brings in more music/entertainment industry experts who help to teach both our students and Marcone & me. This is a big, big deal because the industry is constantly changing. If Jason goes to a school where the faculty is out of touch (there are still guys who say, “I don’t do Facebook,” yet they teach about an industry that lives with Facebook!), he will be at a huge disadvantage.
William Paterson University is 20 miles from New York City. If he wishes, and if he works hard, he’ll have the opportunity to intern there with companies that match up with what interests him the most. We tell students that if they are going to school to focus on the music industry, they better do it in/near NYC, LA, or Nashville. Anywhere else and they’re missing out on opportunities.
We have a great, evolving program that was ranked as a top program in the country by industry trade Billboard Magazine last October.
We would be happy to speak further with your son and answer his, and your, questions to help you both decide the right place to go.
David Philp Assistant Professor Music Management & Pop Music Studies William Paterson University 973-720-3802 firstname.lastname@example.org