Club connects students to music, entertainment industry

The Music Industry Association is a student-led organization that provides workshops, panel discussions, and mixes to help aspiring artists succeed in the music and entertainment industry.

Over the past several decades, the music industry has evolved significantly – from the way artists discover to the way consumers receive and enjoy their favorite songs. A social media presence has become practically mandatory and today’s artists – both local and global – are able to record and upload their music to various streaming platforms for instant sharing.

Lucy Barnard, a double major in marketing and legal studies, said talent is the one thing that seems to remain constant in the field. And at the University of Miami, she said, “There is so much to offer.”

Barnard, who hails from the Greater Boston area, is president of the Music Industry Association (MIA), a student-led organization that connects teachers and professionals involved in the music and entertainment industries with students actively seeking to start professional music careers. The association was founded in 2016 and now has over 150 members who regularly participate in events and programs offered throughout the semester.

“The Museum of Islamic Art hosts guest lecturers, panel discussions, conferences, field trips and volunteer gatherings to help our members build their network and work on their communication skills,” Barnard said. “We also help our members identify and secure training and employment opportunities in the music industry.”

The organization recently hosted a discussion with musician Avery Lynch – “Avery Lynch and the Team: The Latest Singer/Songwriter Music Release and Industry Insights”. Lynch uses TikTok to post original songs and has received 6.2 million likes on the app. During the discussion, the students shared how important it is to maintain a social media presence to promote music and videos. Lynch said she constantly posts original content and makes sure to engage with her followers.

“I would wake up every morning with new opinions and comments,” Lynch said. “I was writing it and then shooting it in 20-30 minutes. I was doing it every day during the summer. There were a lot of songs that had to pump, but I kept going.”

Barnard said direct knowledge and experience such as the advice Lynch shared is what students can expect from MIA, because the organization is interested in creating more intimate networking opportunities to improve relationships and connections.

“We are currently building a platform on Facebook to foster creative partnerships between student artists and aspiring professionals in the field,” Barnard said. This will essentially connect the musician to a potential director, producer, or videographer. “This year we are trying to do more to empower the entrepreneurial spirit of students who want to thrive in an industry with many closed doors,” she added.

MIA members said they look forward to partnering with more university departments such as the Toppel Career Center to help craft music industry-specific resumes and portfolios.

Barnard, a self-proclaimed music fanatic, said that while social media has created a new avenue for discovering artists, it’s not enough.

“It is enough to capture the attention of the desired audience in the beginning, and you also have the responsibility to develop and nurture that relationship thereafter.” Barnard, who is currently an intern at SoCast Digital, a music and entertainment technology company, and IN2UNE Music Inc., a digital marketing and marketing agency, said This requires a deliberate and consistent effort.” “You also have to get to know who cares about you and know who they are and what they care about, in order to continue to create content that consistently delivers value.”

For the upcoming semester, the organization has several events already planned for its members, including one with singer-songwriter Sarah Kinsley, an alternative pop artist based in New York.

For more information about MIA and how to join the student organization, visit Engaging web page.

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