Program Board kicks off USC Arts Career Week

The 2016 USC Arts Career Week, a series of career panels and workshops dedicated to helping students find careers that suit their passions for the arts, kicked off on Monday with a discussion featuring Rick Baptist of American Federation of Musicians Local 47 at The Music Complex in the Thornton School of Music.

The Arts Career Week, which takes place between Feb. 22-25, provides an opportunity for students interested in the arts to discover occupations related to various creative endeavors, ranging from instrumental performance to managerial positions. It is hosted by the Performing Arts Committee, a branch of the Undergraduate Student Government’s Program Board that brings different performers to USC, as well as sponsors related to the music industry.

This year marks the inaugural year for the Arts Career Week, which is open to all USC students regardless of major, and was created primarily to provide additional resources to USC students who are considering a career in the arts.

“We’ve been hearing that a lot of the art students didn’t feel that there were enough career events tailored to their needs,” said Sara Kern, co-assistant director for the Performing Arts Committee. “And for people who are interested in the arts but aren’t in any of the arts programs … this event gives them the opportunity to network and explore a wider array of careers.”

The discussion panel on Monday with Baptist, vice president of the Hollywood chapter of AMF and acclaimed trumpet player, and Eric Dubbury, a USG senator and intern for Baptist. Both Baptist and Dubbury focused on the multitude of options and opportunities available to performing musicians through the AMF, encouraging students to pursue their passions for music.

Also on Monday was the Live Music Production panel. Hosted in collaboration with the Music Industry Connection and Concerts Committee, the event brought in professionals from the field who talked about their experiences in production and networked with students.

Students who attended the event were excited to hear from Baptist and gain insights into the professional music industry. Ellen Shinogle, a first year master’s student in trumpet performance, looks forward to attending a Screen Actors Guild panel on Thursday as well.

“Rick Baptist is a legend, and being a trumpet player [myself], I wanted to hear all his stories about the films he’s played on. It’s really inspirational,” Shinogle said. “He offered me a lesson and time to talk later, so I’m really thankful he was so personable and generous with his time.”

The 2016 USC Arts Career Week will end on Thursday.