Date: May 2010
Creator: Branscome, Eric E.
Description: This study used a semistructured interview schedule to identify the music career opportunities available to students who graduate with an undergraduate music degree, and the skills, interests, work values, and personal characteristics that may determine a person's suitability for these music careers. Six university faculty members from each of the 11 NASM-accredited undergraduate music degree fields participated in the study (n = 66). Fourteen professional musicians who were recommended by these faculty members also participated in the study. Concerning the musical and non-musical skills that may determine a person's suitability for a music career, participants consistently noted the importance of performance skills in their respective fields. Participants also consistently cited people skills, and noted that most musicians interact with people on a daily basis, and use people skills to build social networks that may lead to employment. When asked about the interests that may lead someone to a music career, participants commonly cited the importance of good high school ensemble experiences in students' music career decisions. Concerning the rewarding aspects of music careers, many participants noted that they were more rewarded by the ability to support themselves doing what they loved, than by fame or wealth. Concerning the personal characteristics ...
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