#1
So, I'm a senior in High School who is currently in the frustrating process of choosing where to go to college, and am looking for some guidance from the pit (great idea, I know). I've made good grades, have a good GPA, have taken a good amount of AP and IB classes and am from a middle class family (on the low end of middle class). Bear with me as this might be long and boring.

I pretty much have two choices that would appeal to me:

(1) Go to Tennessee Tech University, which is located in the town I'm living in. It's cheap, I'd live at home, and is a good school for the money. No majors appeal to me at all here, though, so I'd pretty much be going to college just to go to college, albeit would have a lot more money in my pocket in contrast with option 2.

(2) Go to Belmont University in Nashville, about an hour away, and major in Audio Engineering Technology, which would be a major I would absolutely love doing, as I spend most of my free time recording and mixing as a hobby. I'm totally fascinated by it, and spend most of my time fiddling with techniques, playing with plugins, salivating over gear that is totally out of my price range - the like. It's totally something I would want to do with my life, and that particular program at Belmont is pretty stinkin' good.

However, it's not all picture perfect.

Belmont is NOT cheap - around $30k a year, including room and meals, etc. I would hope that scholarships, grants, and federal aid would cover most of that, but it's still a lot of money.

Also, I've heard many people say that a degree in Audio Engineering Technology isn't going to get me a guaranteed job. However, I'd like to throw a few things out there.

I'd be getting 4 years of hands-on experience in some very nice studios (Ocean Way, RCA Studio B, and the on-campus 9,000 square foot studio), by people who have worked in the business and have been very successful, which, in my opinion, is a lot bigger of a benefit than a degree. I would be learning and using real gear, mixing and producing real stuff, as well as interning at studios in town my Junior and Senior years. Also, being in Nashville, there are a poop ton of studios around, which would make finding a job afterwords a LOT easier than most cities. The fact that the Audio Engineering program here is so good is what is drawing me to the school - that and I absolutely adore Nashville.

I realize that option 2 may not be an easy path, but I would rather work hard at something I'd love doing than to settle for a more concrete career path and not be satisfied with what I would be doing.

So..... uh..... advice? Am I being realistic here, or simply dreaming?

Also - basing one of the most important decisions of my life on feedback from the pit is definitely one of the greatest ideas I've ever had. I'm hoping someone who has knowledge of the industry can lend me a hand here.
#2
Follow your dreams, young man
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#3
You will hate having to go to class every day knowing that all you'll get out of it is a degree you'll hate. Do what you enjoy.
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#4
What these guys said. I've heard a quote along the lines of, "The things you do while procrastinating are the things you'll make a career out of". So every time you're supposed to be working on a boring assignment and find yourself fiddling with a song or a mix, you're just telling yourself what you'd rather be doing.
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#5
"I'd be getting 4 years of hands-on experience in some very nice studios (Ocean Way, RCA Studio B, and the on-campus 9,000 square foot studio), by people who have worked in the business and have been very successful, which, in my opinion, is a lot bigger of a benefit than a degree. I would be learning and using real gear, mixing and producing real stuff, as well as interning at studios in town my Junior and Senior years"

Very astute thinking. This is not why, but how you follow your dream job. It may not work out that way in the end, but it will, if nothing else, point you in the direction that will make you happy doing what you do for a living. Good luck!
#6
Seems like you've already made up your mind.

Audio Engineering is about as safe a bet as half the majors out there now
#7
Quote by Xp3ns1v3
What these guys said. I've heard a quote along the lines of, "The things you do while procrastinating are the things you'll make a career out of". So every time you're supposed to be working on a boring assignment and find yourself fiddling with a song or a mix, you're just telling yourself what you'd rather be doing.


"The man who loves his job never works a day in his life."
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#8
I'd say go with option 2, since it's what you're passionate about, but don't expect to make back the 120k you spent on college anytime soon as a mixing engineer.
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#9
Quote by Xp3ns1v3
What these guys said. I've heard a quote along the lines of, "The things you do while procrastinating are the things you'll make a career out of". So every time you're supposed to be working on a boring assignment and find yourself fiddling with a song or a mix, you're just telling yourself what you'd rather be doing.

Hmmmmmm...........

What are my career options if I major in masturbation?
#10
Im currently doing my HND in Sound Engineering and i love it! i would say go with option 2 by far, youll love every part of fit, getting a job in audio engineering is quite difficult as i have been told by my lecturers many times, youll probably end up working freelance and doing projects here and there for different things, working freelance obviously has its good and bad sides.

It shouldnt really matter how difficult the second option is, if you can manage it, go for it, after all itll affect your entire life.
#12
Yo, I go to Belmont University and I'm a second-year AET major.

The thing is I'm not a gear nerd and stuff (I like experimenting with recording as more than a means to an end, but I jam econo). And I have very little enthusiasm for contemporary music, especially the highly commercial kind that Belmont tries to connect people with. I'm not predisposed to networking skills and stuff, and I'm not ambitious enough to overcome that. So I think the music biz isn't right for me. Which means I don't think Belmont is right for me—I can't really justify spending so much on attending a school if I'm not going to be studying the industry it specializes in, ya know? I'm tryin' to figure out what I'm gonna do with myself atm.

But that's just me. Belmont might be a great place for you. A degree is pretty superfluous for an audio person, but if you're actually somewhat committed and if you make the most out of the resources available, you can probs get a lot out of yr college experience.

I'm a ****ing trust fund baby, so going to such a pricey school might be harder on you than it is on me—have you considered the audio programs at other schools? I think MTSU has a pretty solid one (I'm thinking about transferring there for another major, btw).

Feel free to ask me specific questions and stuff.
Last edited by █▐▌█▐▌ at Nov 10, 2011,
#13
Do what you want to do. There's no sense in being stuck at a school in a major you don't enjoy.
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