These past few years have been an amazing time of growth and entrepreneurship. I have met so many amazing people and done some pretty cool stuff in the process. Honestly, it’s all too much to fit into a single blog post. And that’s not really the point of this post anyway. While there will be plenty of time to look back in the days to come, I’m letting everyone know about the new beginning I will be venturing into next school year.
Beginning in the fall of 2015 I will be the graduate assistant for Winston Morris at Tennessee Tech University, which incidentally is my alma mater. For those of you who know me and have heard my rants, you know I have not always been the biggest fan of academia and the way it fails music students. But this offer provided me with the opportunity to work toward several of my personal goals.
First, it allows me to get the master’s degree I have gone without for so long—but I am able to do it in a way that works for me. Because the graduate program at TTU is small (only two people) I am able to create a degree program that caters specifically to the work that I find valuable and necessary for the next phase of my life. As a musician who has gone out into the real world, worked, failed, and succeeded at many things, I am in a place where I know much more clearly what I’m working toward and how I want to get there. That is the kind of foresight I lacked as a graduate student the first time around.
It also allows me to make a difference in the lives of soon-to-be professional musicians. In my years away from school I have learned much about what the life of a musician (both as a player and a teacher) will be like for many of the students I will come in contact with at TTU. And I plan to share that knowledge. Every student I can equip with the knowledge of all the things most music schools don’t teach is one less jaded and angry musician in the world. Plus, Winston Morris has been an invaluable teacher and mentor to me throughout the years, and I can think of no way better to repay that debt than to work for him in such an intensive setting.
I also see this as a chance to refocus. Oftentimes once we get out into the real world, we become so busy with living that many of the goals and projects we hope to achieve get left by the wayside. I am being given a very unique and unusual opportunity to take a couple years and flip that around—I can set aside all the regular worries and concerns of life and direct my attention to all the musical projects I have thought about but not completed in so long. I did not realize the kind of freedom and support I had going through school the first time around, so I plan to make the most of it!
I hope there will also be lots of new content on this blog. Some will be more posts like you’re used to seeing, but some will also be insights into all the many projects I’ve got coming down the pike over the next few years.
Thanks for sticking around. This next chapter in life should prove to be a very exciting one!
Jesse, you’ll do awesome.
Both of you.