As a President’s Innovation Award recipient in 2017, Megan Kaulfers attended her first NAMM Show in Anaheim, where she was able to learn about and connect with the industry firsthand. We followed up with Megan, a University of the Arts student, to discuss her experiences at The NAMM Show and how receiving the President’s Innovation award is inspiring her to make change in the music industry.
What got you initially interested in the music industry?
Music has been a part of my life since I was a little girl learning to play clarinet and singing. I realized how much more there was to the world of music and how intent I was on being involved. Being a part of the music industry was not so much a choice as it was already a part of me. I wanted to be a part of something that actually fulfilled me and added meaning to my life.
What are your goals for working in the music industry?
My main goal is to inspire more women to work in this industry and become successful. The music industry has been male dominated for a long time, and now more than ever, it is time for a change! I want to be able to show others the power of women in this industry as well as support them and give them a platform to showcase their talent and worth. I would like for my own future success to be an example for other women and inspire them to know their worth and value their work.
How do you think being a President’s Innovation Award recipient will help you in your career?
This award is something I can put on my resume and discuss in conversation. But it is more than that- it is a key to opportunity. If I had not received this award, I would not have been able to go to NAMM and leave with an amazing experience and the confidence I now have to move forward with my career.
Do you plan on attending another NAMM Show?
In the future, I would love to attend another NAMM Show. By then, I will have graduated college and will be much more involved within the industry. I want to be able to go back and reflect on my past experience while gaining a new one. The industry insight provided by the NAMM Show will be critical to my development as an industry professional and will only grow with the more NAMM Shows I attend.
Do you recommend college music students to apply for the NAMM President’s Innovation Award? If yes, why?
Absolutely. College students often struggle with money and would not be able to afford to attend the NAMM Show if they did not receive the stipend that comes along with the award. In addition, attending The NAMM Show helped me realize my goals working within the industry and the role I want to play. It allowed me to receive the education, confidence, and connections I need in order to stand out and be successful. I highly recommend students apply if they want to gain a similar experience to mine.
The NAMM President’s Innovation Award supports individuals who are enrolled in college and university music and/or music business programs and are preparing for careers in the music products industry. The Innovation Award seeks to support individuals who express commitment and aptitude for business leadership and innovation in the music products industry.