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"Think you know the entertainment business?" by Kerri Moseley-Hobbs

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Eunice Moseley
Freelance Associates

 kerri_exotic_headshot.jpgCOLLEGE WIZARD: Think you know the entertainment business, think again  
As an advocate and administrator in higher education, nothing seems more annoying and ill prepared than a entertainment industry person whose answer to higher education is that they "already know". It‘s not that I think that everyone should subject themselves to tuition and fees, or submerge themselves in student loan debt, but the idea that anyone who is not open to "learn" makes my eye twitch. You may ask why and my answer is because this frame of thinking will stunt their personal and professional growth, the growth of their industry, and the growth of the community around them.

Take this argument: Almost every aspect of life is affected by some type of law, regulation, or ethical standard, and truthfully these things can change depending on what happened yesterday. The fast pace, constant change that has become our world has proven that the old philosophy that you should never stop learning will never expire. Today, it is easy to be a one-hit-wonder, lose a job or hold on an industry, a competitive edge or personal success, by simply falling behind in the knowledge of what is or will be. The ability to plan ahead and to forecast the future has gone from being a desired trait, to a required ability in any job; especially in entertainment business where copy cats last to be one-hit-wonders and long term success is based on the ability of the artist to reinvent themselves or to response in art, what their audience desires.

What one has to realize is that the term "entertainment business" is not lingo, slang, or the current "saying", it is, well, a business - one that is worth millions of dollars. So why is it that people who are interested in "business" out of entertainment see the need and importance of higher education in business (whether they earn associate, bachelor's, master's or doctorate degrees), but the entertainment "business" is so far more relaxed?

There are colleges and universities that have turned to this idea and need. For example, in 2008 Coppin State University in Baltimore Maryland introduced a bachelors of science major in Entertainment Management and law schools have concentrations in entertainment law and sports law.

What does this mean? You have to decide in the entertainment business if you are going to be a player, a pawn, or a product. Hopefully you chose to be a player, but ask yourself, can you win at a game that you think you know how to play?

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