Is the Music Industry Singing Your Name?

So you love music, but what on earth are you going to do with a degree in music? Well, there are a lot more opportunities and options than you think, and many of them are right under your nose. Even if you are not specifically a major in “music” but you enjoy it as a hobby, there are still ways for you to combine your passions.

Music - an art for itself - Headphones and music notes / musical notation system

Perhaps you have decided to pursue a degree in music, you have spent countless hours in the Greenhill Center of the Arts, and now its graduation time, or close to it. There are many fields you could pursue with your degree that people often overlook. Maybe you have a passion for music, but for the law as well. You could consider becoming a Music Lawyer and protect rights of composers, artists, and copyrights. Perhaps you have a passion for media as well as music. The position of a Mix Engineer would be perfect.

Let’s say you have majored in some area of business, but you still play an instrument or like to spend your free time singing and just are not ready to let go of that interest. There are still plenty of opportunities for you.

  • Stage Design and Management
  • Tour/Road Management
  • Talent Scouting
  • Song Plugging

How do you get experience in these fields? Start off by working for the local campus radio station, volunteer for industry events, work in an audio equipment sales store to learn more about the technology, or organize song writing session with other students. Below are some websites that can help you with your music career search.

UW-Madison Music Career Services

Inside Jobs

Photo by photosteve101

From the Archives: Soar with a Major in Health, Human Performance and Recreation Major

This post was originally posted on January 25, 2010 by Ellen Hatfield. 

The Winter Olympics are just a few short weeks away (the Opening Ceremony is February 12th!). All eyes from around the world will be on Vancouver, British Columbia, in Canada. I thought it would be fitting to explore career paths in the field of sports and recreation.

On the UW-Whitewater campus, the department of Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Coaching has a major (Health, Human Performance and Recreation) for those individuals who don’t necessarily want to teach physical education. With this major, students can choose from several different pathways for their career development. Fields include exercise science, health behavior science, sports management, coaching, and athletic training to name a few. The field is quite competitive, and if you open yourself up to the potential of pursuing different career paths within the sports and recreation fields, you’ll probably have greater success of establishing yourself professionally.

In exercise science there are a variety of areas to look at including: physical fitness, athletic training, physical or occupational therapies, education, business, or sports medicine. Sports managment areas include: amateur athletics, facilities and event management, professional teams and leagues, sports merchandising, and leisure and fitness. Also check out athletics & sport and recreation & leisure studies from University of Tennessee-Knoxville.

Employers in the sports and recreation fields are as varied as the areas of focus. Employers include: colleges and universities, national/state governing bodies, International Olympic Committee (IOC), training centers, YMCA, sports camps, stadiums, golf courses, city parks and recreation departments, professional teams, health clinics, retirement centers, resorts, rehabilitation centers, hospitals, and health clubs and fitness centers, to name just a few.

As I said before, the field of sports and recreation is competitive. You have to prepare yourself to work hard. There are some things you can do while you are still college. Join professional organizations, often there are student rates that get you all or most of the same benefits as the professionals. Get involved with athletic teams, intramurals, or other recreation programs on campus. Do one or more internships. Professional teams and leagues will often have internship opportunties in multiple areas.

Other resources online to check out:

Whatever career path you decide to choose to coordinate with your Health, Human Performance and Recreation major, do what interests you and find the career that you love.

To all, enjoy watching the Olympics in February as athletes follow their dreams and compete on snow and ice!

Photo by: t a k k  ( / CC BY 2.0)

From the Archives: Event Planning

This post was orginially posted on Feburary 14, 2011 by Kathy Craney.

This morning as I was getting ready for work, I was watching a Milwaukee news program and saw an interview from the Milwaukee NARI Spring Home Improvement Show. They have over 330 exhibitors and more than 700 booth spaces as well as speakers, competitions, etc. Home improvement may not be your particular interest, but have you ever thought about what goes into planning an event and who coordinates all those people/spaces/etc? An Event Planner, also known as a Meeting or Convention Planner.

Other Titles:

  • Corporate Planner
  • Government Meeting Planner
  • Convention Services Manager
  • Conference Coordinator
  • Education Planner
  • Manager of Registration
  • Education Seminar Coordinator
  • Conference Services Director


1. Many employers prefer applicants who have a bachelor’s degree:

  • Marketing
  • Public Relations
  • Communications
  • Business
  • Hotel or Hospitality Management

2. Experience planning meetings for a university organization or club (Also think Internships!)

3. Useful Skills:

  • Excellent written and verbal communications
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Good at establishing and maintaining relationships
  • Detail-oriented
  • Ability to multi-task
  • Meet tight deadlines
  • Maintain composure under pressure
  • Quantitative and analytical skills
  • Computer skills
  • Speaking multiple languages may be a plus

Job Prospects: Employment of meeting and convention planners is expected to grow 16 percent over the 2008-18 decade, which is faster than the average for all occupations.  Opportunities will be best for individuals with a bachelor’s degree and some meeting planning experience.

For Further Information:

  1. Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-11 Edition Meeting and Convention Planners
  2. For information about meeting planner certification, contact: Convention Industry Council, 700 N. Fairfax St., Suite 510, Alexandria, VA 22314
  3. For information about the Certified Government Meeting Professional designation, contact: Society of Government Meeting Professionals, 908 King St., Lower Level, Alexandria, VA 22314
  4. For information about internships and on-campus student meeting planning organizations, contact: Professional Convention Management Association, 2301 S. Lake Shore Dr., Suite 1001, Chicago, IL 60616-1419
  5. For information about meeting planning education, entering the profession, and career paths, contact: Meeting Professionals International, 3030 Lyndon B Johnson Fwy., Suite 1700, Dallas, TX 75234-2759
  6. Additional career information about meeting and convention planners

Managing Your Online and Social Media Presence

It’s no secret—social media is a growing industry these days, and it’s growing fast. This being said, whether you like it or not, embracing social media is a must in this day and age.

First off, it’s a way to brand yourself. Social media branding is low cost and it’s a way to communicate with people inside and outside your company. According to a study conducted by Harris Interactive, 45 percent of employers said that they were using social networks such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter to screen their candidates. When viewing social media presence, 35 percent of employers said that they decided not to offer a position after viewing one of the previously mentioned sites. More than half of the employers who participated said that the main reason for not offering a job was because of provocative photos.

Secondly, social media is a way to engage, simultaneously, with a broad range of people. You can engage with your peers, employers, consumers, and especially with the younger generations. Social media can be a time consuming thing, but you can reach numerous people at the same time. Make sure to set some time aside each day to upkeep your social media presence, check your Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn for chatter and new ways to network every day.

Finally, social media can also be a learning tool. Yes, that’s right, a learning tool.  Information and feedback is given to you instantly. Take the time to check out those discussion groups you’ve joined on LinkedIn, and comment on the topics. This is not only a way to boost knowledge, but you may stumble upon a networking opportunity by giving feedback. Twitter has millions of companies and organizations that tweet out interesting articles every day. Local news stations are beginning to use Twitter, big name websites such as Mashable tweet out useful information, and you can even find jobs through Twitter.

Managing a social media and online presence can be a time consuming thing, but just remember that 45 percent of employers are now using social media as a tool to screen there contacts.  It will be well worth your time to keep your presence clean and up to par.

Photos by ivanpw and daniel_iversen