Music Education

A major in Music offers students a basic education in music performance or music education. Some music graduates move directly into the profession as performers or teachers, but most seek advanced training in graduate programs or apprenticeships with professional organizations. Some music majors use their undergraduate training as a foundation for other professions, such as arts management, various private businesses, or church music work.

Sample Occupations

  • Performance
  • Accompanist
  • Conductor
  • Instrumentalist/Vocalist
  • Technical
  • Acoustician
  • Audio Production
  • Instrument Repairperson
  • Music Critic
  • Music Librarian
  • Music Software
  • Piano Tuner
  • Recording Technician
  • Sound Engineer
  • Stage Manager
  • Teaching
  • Band Director
  • Choral Director
  • Church Musician
  • Music Teacher
  • Orchestra Director
  • Private Studio Teacher
  • Vocal Coach
  • Business
  • Arts Administrator
  • Artist Manager
  • Music Store Owner
  • Other Areas
  • Arranger/Orchestrator
  • Composer
  • Film/TV Scorer
  • Lyricist

Types of Employers

  • Performing Arts Centers
  • Public & Private Schools
  • Theatrical Companies
  • Colleges & Universities
  • Recording Studios
  • Mass Media Companies
  • Arts Councils

Preparing for your career in

Performance: Become an expert at reading music; apply to summer music workshops to improve skills and enhance resume; join professional organizations or unions to network and gain access to job listings; participate in competitions to gain recognition; set up a session at a professional studio to record a demo tape that can be given to producers, directors, and other performance executives, study with a competent private instructor

Music Industry:

Join professional organizations and attend conferences to network with professionals in the field (networking will be essential to a successful job search); seek out opportunities to build technical or business skills necessary for success in the field; volunteer your time with an independent recording label to develop skills; be willing to accept an entry-level position (mail clerk, receptionist) and work your way up if your goal is to work for a nationally recognized recording label or organization; plan to relocate to Los Angeles, Nashville, or New York City for maximum opportunities

Teaching: Develop the ability to describe complex technical language in easy to understand terms, gain experience making presentations in front of large groups, pursue graduate education to teach at the university level, volunteer to teach a music-related topic as part of a nonprofit program for children or adults, plan to pursue any necessary certifications for teach licensure

Banking & Finance: Double major or minor in business to build knowledge in marketing, finance, and accounting, gain experience through an internship in a financial services firm, join a business student organization or serve as treasurer of student organization

How do I know if its right for me?

ASSESS: Take a career assessment, such as PathwayU, to see how your interests, values, and personality fit with majors and careers.

RESEARCH: Research the careers on this WCIDWAMI and thousands of other careers using O*Net Online, The Occupational Outlook Handbook or FirstHand.

EXPLORE: Learn more about a career field of interest by job shadowing, attending a career panel, or participating in a Career Trek. Further your exploration while gaining valuable skills by completing an internship, co-op, volunteer, or research experience.