After being on hiatus for a few months, A Life In Music is back! With the academic hiring cycle just around the corner, I thought it would be helpful to have a post aimed at the entrepreneurial musician looking to make inroads into academia.
I recently accepted my first full-time college teaching position. I applied to academic positions for two years before getting this job. It can be a tough market. With that in mind, a friend who is a former academic and well-acquainted with the challenges of finding an academic position, urged me to tell my “success story.” Truth be told, I was reluctant to do so, because it feels self-aggrandizing. She disagreed, however, and suggested that my experience could be insightful for candidates applying to academic positions.
So in the spirit of entrepreneurship, I present an auto-Q&A about how I got my academic job.
Entrepreneurship is a term that’s become something of a buzzword in the 21st century. It seems everywhere you look, people are identifying themselves as entrepreneurs. But what is an entrepreneur? How might entrepreneurship be applied to a music career? Is it needed? I asked these very questions in my research on entrepreneurship instruction in college jazz programs and its impact on graduates’ careers. Here’s what I discovered.
The term entrepreneur originated in 1734 to “describe a person who bears the risk of profit or loss” (Moreland, 2006, p.4). More recently in 2003, the National Commission on Entrepreneurship (NCE) defined entrepreneurship as “the process of uncovering and developing an opportunity to create value through innovation” and noted that “we are living in an ‘Entrepreneurial Age’” (p. 4).
In NCE’s definition of entrepreneurship, innovation is a key term. For example, the...