Edward Waters College (EWC) will begin offering classes focusing on business principles of the music industry, which is essential to helping students with their post-college careers.  The initial course consisting of five monthly classes will begin on February 11, 2019.

The music business course is the brainchild of Jacksonville native, Ulysses Owens Jr., a Grammy-award winning jazz drummer and Juilliard faculty member, along with Dr. Lucy Chen, EWC music department chair.  Together, they recognized that a fundamental understanding of key business challenges is crucial to enabling new music grads success in the industry. According to Owens, who has seen first-hand the need for being more than a great musician to survive in the music industry, “you must also understand finance, marketing, how to decipher contractual language, and most of all, how to build and maintain relationships.” His lecture series, “Carving Out Your Own Place in the Music Industry in the 21st Century,” has been presented at the University of Chicago, the Stanford University Career Development Center, Florida A&M University, and Eastman College of Music, among others.

Dr. Monique L. Akassi, Associate Provost for Faculty Affairs proclaims, “Indeed, we are so honored and privileged to have Grammy Award winning, Julliard faculty member, Mr. Ulysses Owens, as our Visiting Professor at Edward Waters College this Spring semester. In addition, we are grateful to our very own, Dr. Lucy Chen, for making this partnership possible. Edward Waters College’s faculty are committed to emerging eminence and staying ahead of the curve by offering innovative courses and events to our esteemed students and the global community at large. Under the dynamic leadership and vision of our President, Dr. A. Zachary Faison Jr.; and our phenomenal Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Donna H. Oliver, it truly is a new day at Edward Waters College.” 

Owens recently conducted a well-received music entrepreneurship workshop at EWC that will be expanded upon during the newly established course, which will be taught by Owens on a pro-bono basis.  Partial financial support for the program is also being provided by Community First Credit Union, where Owens recently received an Artist Grant through the Community First Cares Foundation.  Artist Grant funding will allow Owens to obtain resources and materials for the course.

“I was so excited to have Ulysses present his music entrepreneurship workshop here at EWC last year, and I am even more excited now that we are offering it as a full course” commented Chen. “We do as much as we can to teach our students the fundamentals of musicianship.  Being able to play well is a prerequisite to success, but building a career takes so much more.  I truly believe our students will thrive as a result of this coursework.”


About Edward Waters College

Edward Waters College (EWC), accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges, and Schools (SACS) and member of the United Negro College Fund (UNCF), is a private, historically black, urban college which offers a liberal arts education with a strong emphasis on the Christian principles of high moral and spiritual values. EWC was established in 1866 and is an African Methodist Episcopal Church-related institution of learning. It is the first private institution of higher education in the State of Florida.