Alumni Achievement

UMEM has alumni in the industry all over the country.  Here are a just a few.  Read about how UMEM helped them get to where they are today.

Austin Mullins WME Nashville, TN
Laice O'Malley Rocky Mountain Entertainment Agency, ENVY Model and Talent, CID Entertainment Los Angeles, CA
Ian LaPlace Communion Music Group New York City, NY
Zach Partin React Presents Chicago, IL
Ryan Hamilton Sundance Institute Park City, UT
Ashley Barber Barbershop Media Entertainment Los Angeles, CA
Thomas Hunt TicketsWest Portland, OR
Olivia Shjeflo Honest Tea, Inc. Seattle, WA
Rene Scott Communion Music Group New York City, NY
Dan Torti Wilma Theatre Missoula, MT
Katie Vanderpool Tour/Stage Management Portland, OR
Damon Metzner 7S Management Denver, CO
Lucas Conder ScoreMore Shows Austin, TX
Katie Vaughn WME Austin, TX
Josh Talley Vector Management Nashville, TN
Alex Hutchinson Knitting Factory Entertainment Brooklyn, NY
Paul Tappon Red Robin International Denver, CO
Jason Mathews onLoop Missoula, MT
Chad Wulf Los Angeles Dodgers Los Angeles, CA
Ryan Torres The Top Hat Missoula, MT
Scott Osburn Highland Concerts Dallas, TX
Michael Gill Central Saloon Seattle, WA

Austin Mullins

Austin Mullins

"I’m a Great Falls native. I received my B.S. in business administration (management), with a minor in music and a certificate of entertainment management in 2009. I received my MBA in 2010.

I moved to Nashville in the fall of 2010 and worked odd jobs to pay the bills until I was hired to WME’s mailroom in January of 2011. WME is the largest talent agency in the world.  I was the assistant to Becky Gardenhire from May 2011 to July of 2012.  After working for Keith Miller from July 2012 to December 2014, I was promoted to agent. I currently serve the south and southeastern United States for club-level talent."

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Laice O'Malley

Laice O'Malley

“When I am not on set, auditioning or studying, I am in nature. I love to hike, camp, fish, swim  and do yoga.  If it is outside, count me in!

My other passions include my family, music festivals, charity events, working out, editing photos, reading, writing, dancing, singing out loud in my car in traffic, seeing live theatre, supporting independent musicians and going on adventures.

As for my art, I believe it is truly an honor to evoke emotion, action and change in individual audience members. Having the power to tell a story to a number of individuals and be given the opportunity to get a laugh, a cry, a scream or even just a pondering thought is the most beautiful thing on earth to me. 

If I weren't an artist, I would be a professional student. The one thing I love more than my family, my art and my earth is school. I graduated college in three years with three degrees and continue to take classes every chance I get."

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Ian LaPlace

 

Ian LaPlace

"At Communion our goal is to build live platform to help grow developing artists and to establish Communion as a tastemaker. Communion also prides itself as a concert promoter.

I am booking a 12-market tour that happens every month with four to eight bands on each bill.  The tour currently happens in New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, Nashville, Minneapolis, Boston, Louisville, Kansas City, Rock Isand, Dallas, NOLA and Washington, DC.  In addition, for the tour I am programming stages at Bonnaroo, Electronic Forest, SXSW and CMJ.  Aside from the club night tour, I am booking 100 to 150 headline shows for artists such as Catfiish & The Bottlemen, Above & Beyond, Krewella, Jack Garratt, FKJ, City & Colour, 3lau, Leon Bridges, James Bay, Adventure Club, Cashmere Cat and many more.

In addition to my work at Communion, I book a beach resort in Clearwater, Florida, with a focus on electronic music."

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Zach Partin

Zach Partin

"Originally for the Chicago area, I arrived in Missoula in 2005. There I received my B.A. in English with an emphasis in creative writing and a certificate in Entertainment Management. At UM, I was the promotions director of KBGA College Radio as well as the marketing coordinator for UM Productions.”

In the Spring of 2010, I returned to Chicago to work for React Presents, a full-service concert promotion and production company.  I am a talent buyer for React Presents, the music director and talent buyer for the MID, and publicist for all of our entities and festivals. I also own my own boutique publicity firm and work with artists such as Moon Boots, Grandtheft, Zimmer and more.

React Presents owns and operates Chicago's number one nightclub, the MID, and a 1,500-capacity live room, Concord Music Hall.  We also produce hundreds of events of ranging in capacity from 200 to 40,000 in Chicago, Milwaukee and Detroit and seven festivals in the Midwest: Spring Awakening Music Festival, Mamby on the Beach, Summer Set Music & Camping Festival, North Coast Music Festival, Forever Festival, Freaky Deaky Halloween and REACTion NYE."

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Ryan Hamilton

Ryan Hamilton

"Originally from Havre, Montana, I received a B.A. in psychology and a certificate in entertainment management in 2007.  I continued as an undergraduate student at UM through 2008 in order to complete by B.A. in communication studies and further my entertainment management experience by serving as director of UM Productions. I worked seasonally for the Sundance Film Festival in 2009 and 2010, managing the festival credentials team. I then returned to UM to earn a master’s of accountancy. Upon graduation from the MAcct program in 2013, I started full time at Sundance Institute in the Finance Department as the accounting coordinator. In December 2013, I was promoted to my current position, accounting manager."

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Ashley Barber

Ashley Barber

"In 2012, I graduated from UM with a B.A. in film studies and a certificate in entertainment management. Shortly thereafter, I moved to LA to pursue my dream job of being a film producer. My first position was as an assistant to one of the most successful TV producers in the world, Michael King of Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy, Oprah and Dr. Phil fame. I was then selected to work on the executive team for Paula Abdul at her entertainment company, Abdul, Inc. In April of 2015, I started my own production company, Barbershop Media Entertainment. There I work as a freelance producer on several film projects, including a commercial for a former UMEM guest lecturer. I owe my growing success to the entertainment management program, the 401, 402, and weekend classes and the mentoring of the founding and core UMEM professors."

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Thomas Hunt

Thomas Hunt

 

"I lived in Missoula from 1998-2005.  I graduated from UM in 2002 with a Business Administration – Management degree.  During my senior year, I was very fortunate to take the first Entertainment Management course offered through UM’s College of Business.  During my final semester I did a venue management internship with Tom Webster at the University Theatre and Adams Event Center.  That was really the first time I realized that I found something I wanted to do. I have always loved music but had no musical talent.  Thanks to UMEM program, I have spent the last 13 years working in various sectors of the entertainment industry including talent buying, concert promoting, venue management, marketing, ticketing/box office management, technical production and a plethora of other duties.  

2002 - 2005: Talent Buyer/Concert Promoter MMS Productions, Missoula, MT

2005 - 2011: General Manger – Orpheum Theater, Flagstaff, AZ

2012 - Present: I am currently living in Portland, Oregon and have been working for TicketsWest the past 3 ½ years managing their call center and overseeing help desk operations for over 150 ticketing outlets in Oregon and Colorado."  

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Olivia Shjeflo

Olivia Shjeflo

"Graduating from the University of Montana in 2010 with a degree in business administration (marketing) and a certificate in entertainment management, I headed west to Seattle to start a career with Coca-Cola in the sales and marketing fields. I paved my way through many different positions, relying on my connections and tenacity until I landed my current position in the field marketing department of Honest Tea, Inc.

Throughout my career, I have used the skills I attained in college, specifically from UMEM, to excel in field marketing. Now the West Division Manager at Honest Tea, I manage a team in the western third of the country, helping them delight consumers with unforgettable experiences associated Honest Tea and now Illy Issimo, a bottled ready-to-drink coffee. I also work with my counterparts across the country to plan go-to-market strategies on a national scale.

I like to keep my creative juices flowing on my off time by remodeling my home, blogging, creating new items out of old found items and reading. I keep my Montana roots strong by visiting the state several times a year and always making it back to UM for a football game!"

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Rene Scott

Rene Scott

"I started working for the University Center at UM as the entertainment coordinator, planning events for students. I enjoyed working events and concerts so much I realized that was the career I wanted to pursue. When I found the UMEM program, I knew it was a perfect fit. I began assisting independent promoters in Missoula as a street team member and promoter assistant.

After completing the UMEM program I was offered an internship at Pearl Jam’s record label, Monkeywrench Records. Shortly after starting my internship, they hired me as an administrative assistant for the label and the bands' manager.  In 2014, I accepted a position in New York City at Communion Music. I currently work as the promotions administrator.  I am responsible for the accounting, contracting and all concert logistics for our shows all over the U.S.

I would recommend the UMEM program to anyone and everyone.  This program gave me the skills to pursue the things I am most passionate about."

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Dan Torti

Dan Torti

"I have a bachelor’s degree in business administration and a certificate in entertainment management from the University of Montana where I graduated cum laude. 

Over the past decade, I have worked in various sectors of the entertainment industry including national tour marketing efforts in over 300 unique markets, event consulting, and as a student advisor at University of Montana Productions, as well as independently promoting/producing shows in Missoula, Bozeman and Whitefish as owner of Stonefly Productions. 

In 2014, The Missoulian named me one of the 'Top 20 Business Professionals Under 40 Years Old.'

Over the years, I have worked with acts such as Elton John, James Taylor, Neko Case, Dierks Bentley, Widespread Panic, The Infamous Stringdusters and Dave Chappelle, among many others.

Most recently, I accepted a job as operations manager of the Wilma Theatre in Missoula.  I will be responsible for the day-to-day activities at the Wilma, including working with the many touring artists who will be performing at the theatre. Additionally, I will oversee many ticketed shows at the Top Hat Lounge."

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Katie Vanderpool

Katie Vanderpool

"The most common question I get when I’m interacting with new people is, ‘How did you get into the entertainment industry?’  For me, it took a passion for live music and entertainment and the drive of an entrepreneur.  I am constantly looking to expand business through networking and finding new clientele. 

Growing up in Helena, Montana, there wasn’t much live music around, but that didn’t stop my brother and me from organizing and playing shows around town.  We figured out a way to rent local establishments such as the Algerias shrine, or by visiting the city county building to get a noise permit for outdoor shows at parks around town. 

Before I signed up for my first college classes, I discovered UM Productions online.  I ended up working for UMP throughout my four-year college career, holding a different position each year.  Through UMP I gained a ton of valuable hands-on experience working alongside some of the best tour managers around, including those of Bob Dylan, Allison Krauss and Pearl Jam (to name a few).  It was UM Productions that introduced me to the UMEM program.  The entertainment management program is a great tool and example of how networking can influence your career path. 

Aside from getting my certificate in entertainment management from the College of Business, I received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the School of Theatre & Dance where I developed technical skills in lighting and audio design and stage management.  After graduating, I hit the road with the Montana Repertory Theatre, tour managing several national theatre tours year after year.  It was through the Rep’s production manager, Steve Wing, that I really learned the social skills of being a tour manager. 

For a small city, Missoula has so many opportunities for those who aspire to work in the industry, from the School of Theatre and Dance, the Music School, Headwaters Dance Company, Rocky Mountain Rigging, UMEM, UMP, all the way to the Missoula Children’s Theatre.  Pick your passion and follow it.  Today I reside in my favorite city in the nation, Portland, Oregon, and continue to tour manage for various artists, and stage-manage festivals throughout the country."

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Damon Metzner

Damon Metzner

 

"I am a product of New Orleans, Louisiana who moved to Missoula in 2001.  By the time I started at UMEM in 2007, I had founded two Missoula-based production companies.  I also was the exclusive talent buyer for two Missoula venues and had toured as a drummer, performing legendary festivals and venues, including Bonnaroo and the Gorge in Washington. 

 

I earned a certificate in entertainment management, and, after leaving Missoula in 2008, I took over as the marketing director of Mike Thrasher Presents in Portland, Oregon, a company nominated by Pollstar as independent promoter of the year in 2009.  I then then moved to Denver in 2010.  That's where I currently live and work as the marketing director for 7S Management.  

 

7S Management is one of the strongest boutique artist management firms in the country, representing a diverse roster of acts, including Top 40 bands such as American Authors, rising stars such as Shakey Graves, electronic acts such as The Floozies and Boombox, in addition to more established artists such as Rodrigo y Gabriela, Galactic, Mary Chapin Carpenter and many more.  

 

If you would like you to be an intern at 7S.  Please contact me."

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Lucas Conder

Lucas Conder

"UMEM and UM Productions have played a crucial role in my career. Scott Douglas, title? captivated me.  Throughout the program he brought working industry professionals into the classroom to help shape my career choices. UM Productions gave me invaluable hands-on experience and an opportunity to foster working relationships within the industry. Marlene Hendrickson at UM Productions became a mentor and champion for me as my advisor.

After graduating from the University of Montana with a degree in business administration (marketing), I moved to Cape Cod, Massachusetts, to work at the Cape Cod Melody Tent for the summer. From there, I was hired directly to an assistant position at WME, the largest talent agency in the world.

During my time at WME I worked for three different agents, two of whom were partners as well as department heads. I worked with acts such as The Weekend, Calvin Harris, Pharrell, B.B. King, Korn and the Pixies and was accepted into the Agent Trainee program.

After three and a half years at WME, I decided that I want to focus on a different career path and joined the team at ScoreMore Shows as a talent buyer. ScoreMore is an indie concert promoter based out of Austin, Texas. We specialize in mid-market festivals and hip-hop and electronic shows in the Southwest and Southeast. Our festivals include Neon Desert in El Paso and JMBLYA in Dallas and Austin."

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Katie Vaughn

Katie Vaughn

 

"I graduated from the University of Montana in 2007 with my B.S. in business administration and my certificate in entertainment management.  It was obvious from day one that the entertainment management program was unlike any other college program or experience.  Not only is it taught by current professionals in the industry, but as students we were tasked with applying what we learned to real-life events and projects.  No more hypotheticals! 

 

Because of the contacts I made through the program, I was able to land an interview with William Morris Agency, the world’s leading talent agency, in Beverly Hills.  I started in the mail room and worked my way up to assistant and then coordinator of the Tour Marketing division of the Music Department.  After William Morris merged with Endeavor, creating WME, I decided to pursue an opportunity as general manager of Informed Enterprises, a company founded by then-director of UMEM and two of the program’s instructors. 

 

As general manager, I oversaw the operations of the business and helped organize and execute market research for a major movie studio client.  In 2011, I returned to WME as an agent, where I currently oversee the tour marketing for an array of clients across genres, including Usher, Janet Jackson, Snoop Dogg, Fitz & The Tantrums, Slash and Sheryl Crow."

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Josh Talley

Josh Talley

"I am currently a day-to-day manager at Vector Management in Nashville, overseeing The Devil Makes Three, Richard Thompson and Rodney Crowell. 

I drove south shortly after graduating from the University of Montana in 2005 to start an internship with Maria Brunner at Insight Management, which was converted into a full-time position at the conclusion of the internship. 

In 2007, I took a job at Oh Boy Records and Al Bunetta Management, the company responsible for John Prine’s label, booking, merchandising and management operations. Oh Boy Records and Al Bunetta Management was an example of a true 360 deal before it was fashionable and a common occurrence in the normal course of business. 

I worked at Oh Boy for more than four years, honing skills in all facets of the business before jumping into a new role at Sherpa Concerts (now Emporium Presents) as marketing director while continuing to book John Prine through my own company. 

In 2013, I joined Vector to serve his clients with the broad-based experience he gained from his experience at an independent 360 company, boutique booking agency and as the marketing director for a promoter."

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Alex Hutchinson

Alex Hutchinson

 

"My love of music may have begun in the garage with high school bands, but I was quick to learn the art of promotion by the time I reached college.

 

I arrived in Missoula in the fall of 2008 and graduated from the University of Montana in the spring of 2012 with a B.A. in philosophy and a certificate in entertainment management.  I went on to found House of Possibilities Productions March of 2008. Beginning with low-risk and benefit shows, the company has quickly gained speed and brought its first two-day, camping event (Manifest) to Missoula in 2011. 

 

In addition to my own projects, I also serve as concert coordinator for UM Productions, assistant production manager for the Knitting Factory’s Big Sky Brewery Summer Concert Series for 2012 and as a stage manager at the Sasquatch! Music Festival at the Gorge in Washington.  

 

Since then, I pursued a career outside of the Northwest when taking a job as an agent at a boutique agency in Minneapolis, Hello! Booking.  Soon after I was hired by Am Only/ Paradigm as an agent and relocated to New York City.  Presently, I am the booking coordinator for the Knitting Factory in Brooklyn, New York.  In addition to this, I work for the Surefire Agency based out of San Francisco as an agent aiming to open their New York office within the next year."

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Paul Tappon

Paul Tappon

 

"After two years of community college and three years in the workforce with an unfinished degree, I decided to return to my education. Although I had completed some college and gained experience from my time in the workforce, I was still not completely sure what I wanted to do with my education. After taking some exploratory classes and declaring business administration as my major, I discovered the entertainment management program. Scott Douglas and the program’s leadership and passion at the time was unmatched by any program that I was aware of at the University of Montana, and I jumped right in.

 

Although I see value in lecture-format teaching, I consider myself a hands-on learner by preference. This is one of the biggest reasons that the program resonated with me. In addition to new guest instructors and a very dynamic lecture format, there was an abundance of opportunities to become involved in hands-on learning by participating in events, fundraiser and networking at both a community and national level.

 

I graduated with a double major in management and marketing and a certificate in entertainment management. Although I consider my majors to be my educational backbone, I would not be where I am today without UMEM. Through programmatic engagement and the opportunities that the program offered, I was able to network with remarkable/successful industry professionals, manage events, work in the UMEM office, promote concerts, obtain internships and most importantly, develop a skillset that made me knowledgeable and employable.

 

I am currently the associate manager of field marketing at Red Robin International’s corporate headquarters in Denver. Although burgers and entertainment do not have a direct correlation, I use my experience from UMEM every day at work. My job responsibilities include national and regional marketing, event management and the management of our NFL sports sponsorship program, among other things. I would have never landed at Red Robin had I not worked on Eric Clapton’s Crossroads Guitar Festival as part of my UMEM-based internship with Maria Brunner at Insight Management. It was at Crossroads, in New York City, that I was able to connect with Red Robin’s chief marketing officer and get my foot in the door here, where I have now been for two years. I owe this, and so much more, to UMEM.

 

If a highly involved hands-on approach is one that resonates with you, as it did me, UMEM is the right place for you. The program will always come strongly recommended and highly regarded by me on a personal and professional level. I am also happy to speak with any student contemplating a certificate in entertainment management."

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Jason Mathews

Jason Mathews

"As an action sports athlete, your expiration date is always foreseen and usually happens when you least expect it. For that reason alone, my second option was always to have a plan that included finishing school. I skied competitively and qualified for Nationals twice but was cut short due to a severe leg and knee injury that still affects me to this day.

It was around this time I met Prof. Scott Douglas of the UMEM program, and he talked to me about the world of sports marketing and management and the many jobs in the industry as he raved about his beloved Red Sox. This was my blessing in disguise. Even though the program didn’t have a sports structure or focus, I tailored everything I learned to comprehend it in terms of sports. I started to get my hands dirty by becoming a street team member for a few ski film tours, which led me to working with the marketing team of four national tours for two ski film companies.

In November of 2013, I was asked to be the manager for Paraguay’s first Winter Olympic athlete, Julia Marino. This was the scariest, yet most edifying, experience of my life thus far. I worked with the government’s sports committee and learned the process of contract expectations for companies such as Nike and saw Julia become one of the most positive and influential athletes the country has had.  I also oversaw her social media, growing it from 1 to 31k followers in a matter of months. I learned that the possibility of being a sports manager was in my future.

Prior to this opportunity, I interned for Maria Brunner of Insight Management in Phoenix, Arizona. Insight Management is an entertainment-based grassroots marketing firm that has a clientele list that includes Live Nation, AEG and Danny Zelisko Present. Maria is a hardworking, no-excuses, motivating employer to whom I owe so much.  She helped me learn the clerical side of this business, organizational skills when work is piling up and I under pressure and, most importantly, how to build and maintain relationships. If you have an opportunity to intern for Maria, do it!

Today, I am brand manager of College and Action Sports for onLoop, a crowd streaming, live broadcasting and messaging platform for mobile phones. We are a startup company that, after having positive reviews at SXSW, launched on the App Store Memorial Day weekend.  We've continued to grow every day! I am fortunate enough to work with a team of like-minded individuals while still being able to have my passion of action sports be at the forefront of my every day. Believe in what you know, and lead with passion!"

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Chad Wulf

Chad Wulf

"I finished up my degree at the University of Montana during the summer of 2015.  I left with a B.S. in business administration (marketing) and a digital marketing certificate.  I was never formally a part of the entertainment management program but was introduced to it through a class project.  The project was a redesign of the entertainment management website.  After the class ended, I was hired to assist in the development and design of the new site. 

The experience I had working with the program showed me the value of the program.  The constant stream of industry professionals teaching classes gave students up-to-date information of the goings-on in Entertainment Management as well as contacts upon their graduation.  The students also had a lot of input into the direction of the program, showing me that the program truly wants to see its alumni succeed in the real world.  It was amazing to see the opportunities the students were exposed to, and I wish I had known about the program earlier. 

I graduated with a marketing degree but have a technical background.  After my freshman year, the Forest Service hired me as a computer technical specialist. During the winter, I offered traditional computer support, but during the summer I was involved in wildfire management.  As a computer specialist, I set up and managed the computer infrastructure within fire camps. 

At the conclusion of my junior year, I decided to take a break from the Forest Service and clear out of Montana.  I ended up in Los Angeles as an intern with the Los Angeles Dodgers.  I worked in the information technology department.  There I furthered my computer skills and learned the ins and outs of how a professional team operates.

Working with the entertainment management program was a great experience, and I know the program will have continued success.  I would recommend anyone interested in the entertainment business to join this program."

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Ryan Torres

Ryan Torres

"Throughout my time in the UMEM program, I was constantly volunteering and looking for any opportunity to get my foot in the door. My first few gigs were street-teaming for free entry to shows I was interested in and volunteering for larger music festivals around the country. As my education and involvement with the UMEM program grew so did my skill set and resume.

By my sophomore year I was interning for a band out of California, street-teaming for a local venue and volunteering for six to 10 festivals a year throughout the nation. By my junior year, I had served as tour manager for a northwestern tour for the band I was interning for, became the assistant event staff manager for UM Productions and had converted my festival volunteer spots into paid positions.

Now that I have graduated, I am working full time with Top Hat Entertainmentt as marketing coordinator in Missoula, MT as well as working various music festivals as an independent contractor, handling artist relations, artist and festival merchandise, volunteer coordinator, and ticketing/box office management for festivals such as Electric Forest, Bonnaroo, Wakarusa, All Good, Telluride Bluegrass, Northwest String Summit, Hangtown Halloween Ball, Phases of the Moon, River City Roots and Floydfest.

I would highly recommend the University of Montana’s entertainment management program to anyone interested in getting involved in the industry. Network with the presenters and advisors, take good notes, don’t be afraid to work for free until your skillets are polished up and jump on any opportunity you have to get involved. We are the next generation."

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Scott Osburn

Scott Osburn

"UMEM and its directors are the reason I have been able to build a successful career in the entertainment business.

Entering my sixth year of owning and operating a live event and festival production/promotion company, I often look back at my time at UMEM. The music business must be taught through first-hand experience for the most part. UMEM gave me the tools and know-how needed to navigate this relationship-based and close-knit business.

One of the most important lessons I learned from the instructors and the program is ethics.  As we all live in such a fast-paced and ambitiously aggressive business society, our ethics are often tested. I look back at the past years and can count numerous times where I had an opportunity to follow the fast path.  Looking back at the stories, real-life scenarios and understanding of potential downfalls from such behaviors that were taught at UMEM were vital.

Today more than ever it is important to have a good sense of self and a ferociousness to survive in this business. But as soon as you begin to compromise your moral integrity, you not only cheat yourself, you cheat the people that helped you get there. Without Tom Webster’s commitment to helping me grow my career, the charisma of Scott Douglas and support of my classmates I would not be where I am today."

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Michael Gill

Michael Gill

"A 2013 entertainment management . I had long-standing involvement in Missoula's music community, co-founding the Raven Cafe and Dead Hipster Promotions, which later developed into Dead Hipster Dance Party.  After relocating to Seattle, I became the talent buyer and marketing coordinator for the Central Saloon."

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