Music Business Management students gain hands-on learning and business experience during Oshawa Music Week

Durham College’s (DC) Music Business Management (MBM) students hosted their annual event – Oshawa Music Week – which promotes local musicians and elevates the local music community through performances, exposure and showcases.

The five-day event, which runs the first week of April, features live music performances across the Durham Region, a music business summit and networking opportunities and is a dynamic way for students to gain hands-on skills and experience.

“All students have different needs and interests. Some want to be administrators, some want to be event planners, artists, managers. Some want to be venue owners, some people want to run shows,” said Tony Sutherland, an MBM faculty member. “An event like this allows students to try their hand at different facets of the industry.”

Eyrica D’rozario, a second-year student in the MBM program was tasked with doing the promotional work, including managing and developing social media content, posters and video promotional material for the week.

“There were so many moving parts, it takes a big team,” D’rozario said. “That’s what was so special about the program, was that it was so collaborative. You are going to talk to everybody, you are going to meet everybody, and you will make some of the best memories in this program.”

Barry Waite, Executive Dean of the Faculty of Media, Art and Design says this event is beneficial for both current students and those looking to come to DC.

“It’s the best example of experiential learning at the college,” Waite said. “The real value is it gives them an opportunity to see the business side of things and all different aspects of the music business.”

Waite said this event is an excellent way to show students how they can take their interest in the arts and turn it into a career. During many of these events, Waite said he hears many DC students say things like: “We didn’t know you had a program like this.”

Many of the students participating in or organizing the event are performers themselves or are career professionals in the music industry. Even faculty involved in the event are experts of the music industry and are committed to helping these students be successful.

“My background has always been within the music industry,” Sutherland said adding that this event helps students gain the skills to negotiate and reach out to people in the industry.

“It helps them in building a portfolio,” he said. “It helps them to build those bridges to a music industry, which is what they’re going to graduate and work in.”