Recording Arts Education, in Brief
By Sarah Jones
So you want to land a job in that glamorous industry, the recording biz. You're dying to break in, and you're ready to take the important first step–learning the ropes.
Or maybe you're already in the industry and you'd like to advance your career by enhancing your skills or learning some new technology. Maybe you're considering a career change. Or perhaps you're just feeling nostalgic for your old side rule. At any rate, recording arts school is on your horizon.
There's only one problem. Okay, two problems: time and money. How do you train for your dream job without giving up your current one? What do you do when you want to go to school but you're not realistically able to move across the country, or invest years of your life and tens of thousands of dollars on a recording arts school education?
Well, there are hundreds of programs out there designed just for you. Whether you have an hour, a summer or a semester to spare, short-term recording arts programs can provide a comprehensive, sometimes intense, hands-on learning experience tailored to your schedule and pocketbook.
If you're new to the recording industry, you may be looking for a way to jump in and get some practical recording experience right away. James Petulla, president of Music Connection, says his program was designed to solve the age-old problem of "no experience." In the Music Connection program (a Broadcast Connection program is offered for those looking for careers in radio), students who pass an admission interview are enrolled in an on-the-job training program in which a student is assigned one-on-one to a mentor at a recording facility. A percentage of the tuition goes to the mentor (usually a chief engineer or studio owner), who is required to take the individual through the Music Connection's recording arts school program and evaluate his/her progress through periodic testing–insurance that the student will receive audio (not coffee machine) recording training in the studio. Students can arrange to intern days, nights or weekends, depending on the studio scheduling. Instructional text and tapes are included in the tuition, and all Music Connection graduates receive seven years of job placement assistance.