Music Students In Many Schools Can Pursue Degrees In Jazz Why Major in Music in College?

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Why Major in Music in College?

This is a question every music professional must develop a strong and satisfying answer to. What is your goal in studying music? Are they justified? Will they lead you to a career that will support you and your family? Do you love music enough to make it a part of your life?

There are many different answers to these questions; some reasonable, some not. Here, the reliable advice of teachers and parents will be invaluable. A music degree can take you in many directions, many of which you never intended to begin with. It is your responsibility to get where you want to go.

Performance: Several music majors start their studies with the dream of playing music for a living. However, the vast majority of them won’t, and a very, very small percentage make a living from performance alone. The professional music scene, be it popular, orchestral, opera, or jazz, operates much like the world of professional sports: very few earn very high salaries, while the vast majority do little as a part-time job or hobby. . Smart performing arts professionals (even if they are very confident in their abilities) are still developing a parallel career plan that can support them in almost certain cases when they don’t make a living like Michael Jackson or Pavarotti.

Education: Most music majors make training to become a music educator a central part of their education. I believe this is important not only because music teaching is much easier than being a gainful performer, but also because I believe that people who know enough about an instrument are the best performers. The career paths a music student can take to later teach music are wide and flexible—everything from self-employed private tutors to public middle school teachers and college professors, combined with a career as a semi-professional performer. more possible. As students earn their degrees, they must take the necessary steps to qualify for these positions.

Private music teacher: No degree required for success, but highly motivated, one-on-one teaching and small business experience.

K-12 music teacher: Music education degrees are encouraged (but performance majors can take remedial classes to qualify). Many states require a teaching license (additional years of study).

A college professor: A PhD or Master’s degree and extensive performance experience are usually required. Experience as a high school teacher is critical to winning.

Musicology and Composition: The third major area of ​​study for music majors is musicology (including music theory, history, and possibly sociology and ethnography) and music composition. With the exception of a few screenwriters, such as John Williams, these majors were intended to lead to college professorships, perhaps to careers in music and book publishing on the side. As a more academic major in music, this field can be not only very satisfying, but also quite lucrative.

The important thing to remember about a career in music is that it is almost never simple and easy. They almost always require, at least in the early stages of career development, a second part-time job or freelance work as a private music teacher. (The exception to this is becoming a public school teacher right out of college.) Many young opera singers work “day jobs” as bank tellers or web designers as they advance in the industry. Composers almost always sit on university faculties, teaching theory and history. A career in music requires confidence, resourcefulness and persistence. But this is not very different from the opportunities and requirements of an entrepreneur, financial advisor or many other professionals. The financial rewards may be slightly lower than in these other industries, but the job satisfaction is usually higher.

An often-overlooked, but very real, end-to-end career path for college music majors is one I’ll encourage: Get a bachelor’s degree in music, then pursue a professional degree in another field, such as business, medicine, or law. The first will be specific questions Why waste four years of music theory and instruments when you’re not going to use them in your career? Answering this question ignores the college music curriculum. Completing a Bachelor of Arts and/or Science degree (like any other degree) requires about ten “general” courses designed to provide a well-rounded education. These include hard sciences (chemistry, physics, biology), soft sciences (philosophy, psychology, sociology, humanities), mathematics, history, literature, foreign languages, performing arts, etc. This means that you should study music. Like other majors, many classes are required, and often prerequisites for graduate programs in other subjects can easily be obtained. However, in order to do this work, it will be necessary to research what prerequisites are in the desired professional program and how they can be met in undergraduate school.

Would being a music major put them at a disadvantage? Conversely, medical schools have a much higher percentage of biochemistry majors than music majors, the study found. (66% – 44%, see “Examples of music in schools”. Phi Delta Kappan, February 1994). Graduate schools, as well as employers, are happy to welcome music majors for the dedication they have learned in school, as well as the artistic vision and creativity they have developed. It’s not uncommon for highly skilled musicians to hold lucrative positions in Silicon Valley software while playing a band or company symphony on the side (see Grant Eminence, “The Paradox of Silicon’s Saviors”).

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