Nicole Finch (left), Music Industry Management class of 2013

Music Industry Management Spotlight: Nicole Finch of NAMM

I have always had a love of live music and wanted to help bring that experience to people. MIM gave me that opportunity.

The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) is a not-for-profit association dedicated to a belief in music. They are known for their NAMM trade shows and serve to strengthen the $17 billion global music products industry. Through various activities and programs NAMM has been promoting music making to people of all ages for more than a century.

We recently caught up with Nicole Finch, a graduate of Music Industry Management’s class of 2013 to learn more about her Ferris experience and her life as a Special Events Coordinator for NAMM…

What does it mean to be the Special Events Coordinator at NAMM?

I assist in coordinating NAMM special events such as: concerts, award shows, educational sessions, parties, catering, VIP receptions, and meetings. I currently manage most of the meetings held in the Hilton during the NAMM Show in January. I have to track all their requirements such as AV set-up, room layout, and catering needs. Booking and managing all the bands for our five stages during the show is another task that falls under my position. I listen to all the submissions, with input from the voting committee, and book and manage the bands. It is a bit of a puzzle, since we received over 700 submissions and only have 150 time slots to fill. Another major part of my job is track and fulfilling all NAMM sponsorships. The unique thing about NAMM sponsorships is that we only offer ones that will help enhance the show for both us and the sponsor. We sell banner ads for the mobile NAMM Show application, display cases in the convention center during the show, stage sponsorships, media bins for all magazines, etc.

Why did you choose to study Music Industry Management at Ferris State University?

Honestly, I went on a lot of campus tours when I was in high school and none of the other majors peaked any interest at all. I have always had a love of live music and wanted to help bring that experience to people. MIM gave me that opportunity. The business core and emphasis on music sold me immediately. The organization, Music Industry Management Association, which coincides with the MIM major was also a huge deciding factor. It gives you hands-on learning experience in the field and you need experience to get anywhere in the music industry.

What did you do outside the classroom to prepare yourself for your career?

I was very involved on campus during my time at FSU. I was a member of the Entertainment Unlimited, and the Ferris Fest Co-Chair. MIMA kept me busy, as I jumped right in as a freshman. I helped everywhere I could and held various positions such as the hospitality head and president of MIMA.

My two internships were very beneficial to my career. The first was at Mercy Lounge in Nashville, TN. I worked in the music venue side doing marketing, ticketing, and social media, and also in the special events department helping with event load-ins, layouts, and every day office tasks. The second was at NAMM, which lead to my job today! As an intern, I rotated between various departments assisting and learning how each department functions. I also worked the 2014 Summer Show in Nashville, TN; which was a fun learning experience!

What advice do you have for students in or considering the major?

Music Industry Management is a major that requires dedication. If you have a passion for music, you have to put that same passion into your studies and that will help you succeed in the long run. Get as involved as you can on and off campus. Don’t be afraid to ask questions along the way; everyone in MIM wants to see you thrive.

Anything else you would like to share?

Dan Cronk and Lori Armstrong are the best advisors that anyone could have. They encourage and challenge you and they have helped shape me into the person I am today.