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Focus On Mike Ceglio

Mike Ceglio

Internship Advice from Music Merchandising Major Mike Ceglio

Mike Ceglio is a senior at Hofstra, who will graduate in May 2011. He is majoring in music merchandising and minoring in marketing. He held two internships during his final semester at Hofstra. He is from Franklin Square, New York.

Do you play an instrument and perform in any of Hofstra’s music ensembles?

My primary instrument is guitar, but I also play piano and sing. At Hofstra, I play guitar in the jazz combos program, and sing in the university choir. I learned a great deal from both programs and enjoyed them both very much.

Where are your internships and what are your responsibilities there?

Currently, I am finishing up two internships this semester: one at the New York City concert venues B.B. King Blues Club and Highline Ballroom and the other at the recording studio Body in Motion Music.

At B.B. King and Highline Ballroom, I carry out mundane tasks such as organizing files, correcting contracts for artists, putting up posters around the club, running errands around the city, updating the mailing list, etc. After some time, however, my boss trusted me to be entirely in charge of the Highline Ballroom Facebook page and to even run parts of the B.B. King Web site. At Body in Motion, I run the company’s Web site and social marketing campaigns in addition to engineering music recording projects.

How did you get these internships? Who has been your faculty adviser and how are you making sure you are doing all the correct things in order to get class credit?

My internship at B.B. King Blues Club and Highline Ballroom came somewhat out of the blue. Last summer, I played a free gig with a friend from Hofstra, Jesse Shusman. It turned out that Jesse already had some substantial connections in the music business and some of his contacts would be coming to this show. After the gig, I asked him to introduce me to one of his contacts, and he introduced me to Peter Abraham, the marketing director for B.B. King who happened to be looking for an intern. He hired me on the spot, and I started working at the venue weekly in August 2010.

For Body in Motion, my adviser, Dr. [Ken] Lampl, tipped me off to the internship. He has been a great support and has been with me every step of the way for both internships. As for making sure I am doing everything needed for class credit, I always show up to my internships on time, stay in constant communication with Dr. Lampl, and, most importantly, work like I’m getting paid.

What did you feel you got out of the internship both academically and in terms of networking?

Academically, I learned a great deal about the inner workings of the live entertainment industry and how to run a recording studio. I made many great contacts through both internships, including famous talent buyers, venue owners, and promoters in the New York City area.

What would you say are some "dos" and "don'ts" of being an intern? How does a student make a good impression?

Like I said before, the most important thing to do is to work like you are getting paid. Even if you think no one is watching, someone will notice all of your hard work, and that’s one more friend you have on the inside. In the music industry, every contact counts, and you never know what that contact could lead you to in the future.

What are your plans post graduation?

After graduation, I plan to work at the recording studio full time, but still keep in touch with my contacts at B.B. King and Highline Ballroom. In addition to this, I will be searching for even better jobs through my other contacts as I still make a decent salary doing what I love: music.

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