The music industry is one in which the most successful people are those who leverage their resources and interpersonal relationships to create quality products for mass consumption. Gathering these resources and cultivating these relationships often takes many years’ experience navigating the various structures of the music industry, oftentimes at monetary, social, or professional risk. One of the goals of the National Collegiate Entertainers Group is to minimize this risk and simultaneously maximize the educational and experiential benefits from the pursuit of long-lasting success in the music industry. NCEG accomplishes this goal in large part by emphasizing the practical application of its music industry education curriculum.
NCEG’s music industry education curriculum is a unique approach towards familiarizing its members with critical aspects of the music industry, not only in a historical context, but also (and primarily) in a contemporary context. The curriculum, divided into six topical branches, aims to give members an encompassing and multivalent informational structure by which members can quickly gain industry knowledge that would ordinarily take many years’ worth of trial and error to obtain. Moreover, NCEG has instituted a system of training exercises and reward incentives for its members to meaningfully absorb the information provided such that the members will not only be able to demonstrate their knowledge of the material, but their demonstration of said knowledge furthers their own musical careers in a tangible and practical fashion.
Many of the training exercises are supplemented by existing outlets of information designed for practical application. Combining these supplemental resources with primary and secondary articles written by experts in the music industry creates systematized methods for members to enhance their careers in the music industry in real time. A primary example of these training exercises is one assignment under the “Technology and Resources” topical branch. This particular assignment tasks members to co-write and produce a song, and gives extra credit to members co-writing songs with members from different NCEG chapters. The rationale of this assignment is two-pronged. On the surface, it aims to teach members the importance of interpersonal cooperation in the pursuit of artistic expression. However, and more importantly, it further incentivizes members to actively seek out potential collaborators within a wider scope of their professional field. Embarking on such an endeavor necessitates a certain caliber of bravery, proactiveness, nuance, and professionalism—all qualities befitting a successful member of the music industry.
Practical application is a cornerstone of music industry education, and being able to provide such a resource in a low-risk environment while still yielding high-quality results makes NCEG’s program one that pioneers well-versed and capable young professionals in the music industry.