“The students entering college this fall will shape the music industry of the future,” claimed the ranking. “These are the schools that will make certain they’re ready.” Case in point, nearly 40 percent of the young music executives profiled in Billboard’s 2019 “40 Under 40” feature were graduates of liberal arts programs.
Highlighted in the listing were CalArts courses that focus on the entertainment business, such as the “Creative Entrepreneurship” course. From researching case studies of businesses with varying levels of success to pitching final projects, students learn the fundamentals of entrepreneurship, fundraising, and financial accounting. The article further noted new course guidelines that allow students to “make pitches for seed funding, develop a business plan and, ultimately, launch their own companies.”
Associate Provost for Creative Technologies Ajay Kapur, who also teaches the “Creative Entrepreneurship” course, was quoted in the article: “As an artist, you are always working for yourself. You are your brand.” Also mentioned was alum Ellen Reid (Music MFA 11), who won the 2019 Pulitzer Prize in Music for her opera prism.
For the 2020 ranking, Billboard selected primarily campus-based higher education programs, but nodded to the proliferation of online skills-based music education programs during the COVID-19 pandemic. Check out the full 2020 ranking on Billboard.