For years some of Atlanta’s finest young future music exec’s have been lost to schools like Belmont in Nashville, simply because these Georgian audiophiles had no place to grow; that time has come to an end. Kennesaw State University is ready to start the year off right with their Joel E. Katz Music & Entertainment Program, run by industry veterans Bruce Burch and Keith Perissi.
The program is a joint venture between the Coles College of Business and the College of the Arts. The purpose of the Program is to help students gain knowledge, real world hands on experiences, and to prepare them for jobs in the music and entertainment industry.
The program has been a dream of Dr. Bobbie Bailey’s, whose support of the music and entertainment industry in the state of Georgia has been immense, and has wanted a music & entertainment business program at Kennesaw State for many years.
In 2005, Governor Sonny Perdue signed into law the first Entertainment Industry Investment Act, which resulted in a huge economic impact for the state – over $1.17 billion from 2005 through 2007. In 2008, a new Georgia Entertainment Industry Investment Act was signed into law. Since then, numerous Film and Television companies have brought their productions to the state of Georgia. Georgia is also attracting video game development as it is one of a handful of states that offers a tax incentive in this promising and profitable side of the entertainment industry.
The curriculum of the program is built around lectures from successful local, as well as national, industry leaders who come to campus to speak with the classes and serve as panelists at informative and cutting-edge seminars. Students have the opportunity to get real world, hands-on experience in the industry through their externship and internship programs. Through these programs they learn from some of the top professionals in the entertainment business. The students begin as part time externs during the semester, then become full time interns and then ultimately, entertainment industry professionals.Students have been hired by companies such as Live Nation, The Gospel Music Channel, Zac Brown and Southern Ground, Camp Jam and Polay Financial Management.
Founding partners are Mr. Joel A. Katz and Dr. Bobbie Bailey. Mr. Katz is one of the most prominent entertainment attorneys in the world; representing many of the superstars in the industry including everybody from James Brown, Willie Nelson, Jimmy Buffett, James Taylor, Michael Jackson’s estate, to Bill Gates’ entertainment enterprises, The Coca-Cola Company, AEG, Dick Clark Productions, AFLAC, NOKIA, The Recording Academy, The Country Music Association, Farm Aid and he also serves as a Music Industry Representative for the State of Georgia.
Dr. Bailey is a longtime trustee and benefactor at KSU. Dr. Bailey began the Friends of Georgia Music which has been keeping the arts alive in Georgia communities by recognizing and promoting artists and the music industry for the past 33 years. Each year, Friends of Georgia Music nominates elects and inducts honorees into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame, celebrating individuals who have made a significant contribution to Georgia’s musical traditions. Friends of Georgia Music also provide scholarships to assist future musicians, songwriters and composers, to continue their education and pursue their dreams.
For more information about the MEBUS program: