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Crane program sending 19 students to intern in California this month

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POTSDAM - A contingent of 19 students from The State University of New York at Potsdam will descend on the 2014 National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Show in Anaheim, Calif., this month.

Accompanied by faculty from SUNY Potsdam’s Crane School of Music, the students will have the opportunity to work directly with some of the leading companies in the music industry, through a unique internship program organized by the Crane Institute for Music Business and Entrepreneurship - the only ongoing program of its kind in the country.

“This is a phenomenal experience for our students. It’s life-changing,” said Carol “Kickie” Britt, director of the Crane Institute for Music Business and Entrepreneurship. “Our students make connections and work with professionals in a way that they would have no other opportunity to do. A significant number of them go on to find employment in the industry.”

The NAMM Show is the world’s leading trade event for the music products industry. The 2014 NAMM Show will gather 95,000 members of the music product industry from around the world to preview new products from 5,000 brands across every category from Jan. 23 to Jan. 26. The SUNY Potsdam students will participate in professional development and have access to more than 1,400 exhibits at the show.

“This is not fetching coffee for someone. At the NAMM Show, none of our students are asked to do anything that the other employees of the company are not doing. By the end of the show, you can’t tell our students from the employees of the companies,” Britt said.

To cap off the experience, students attending for the first time will be awarded the NAMM President’s Innovation Award from the NAMM Foundation at the show. The cash grants are awarded to exemplary undergraduate and graduate students who have expressed commitment and aptitude for business leadership and innovation in the music products industry.

Finally, the Crane Institute for Music Business and Entrepreneurship will sponsor the fifth annual Sandy Feldstein Industry Roundtable at 4 p.m. Jan. 25 in the Anaheim Hilton. The Roundtable will again be hosted by NAMM President and CEO Joe Lamond and will focus on how young people may best prepare and present themselves for employment in the music industry.

The panelists are four leaders representing a variety of aspects of the music industry:

■ Sammy Ash, Chief Operating Officer, Sam Ash Music Company

■ Billy Cuthrell, founder and owner, Progressive Music Center

■ Mary Luehrsen, Director of Public Affairs and Government Relations, NAMM

■ David Via, Vice President of Sales and Marketing, D’Addario

To learn more about NAMM, visit www.namm.org.

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