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Music Industry Leadership, MS

Please note that the MS in Music Industry Leadership program is not accepting applications for future start terms. The program has been expanded and renamed the Master of Science in Creative Practice Leadership.  Components of the Music Industry specialization remain in place for students who choose that emphasis.

Northeastern’s Master of Science in Music Industry Leadership (MS.MIL) prepares the next generation of music leaders through global, real-world engagement and state-of-the-art best practices in management, leadership, and entrepreneurship. Graduates of this intensive one-year program are positioned for creative, entrepreneurial, and management roles that address emerging issues in the music industry.

  • Academics
  • Experiences
  • Interests

Leveraging Northeastern’s excellence in global experiential learning, our program allows students to study in Boston and gain real-world experience in New York, Nashville, Los Angeles, and other music capitals across the world.

With real-world research and professional experience with the issues facing today’s music industry, our exceptional faculty bring fresh insight and innovation to their teaching.

Through the elective courses, students shape their own curriculum, following paths that meet personal and professional aspirations through a focus on practice, entrepreneurship, the profession, and research. We also offer a joint JD/Music Industry Leadership program in partnership with the Northeastern University School of Law.

JD/MS.MIL Option

Over the course of 45 months, the program enrolls students successively in the School of Law and the College of Arts, Media and Design. JD/MS candidates must complete the first and last years of the program in the School of Law. The year of music industry courses in the College of Arts, Media and Design may be taken during either the second or third year.



1. Students should be able to integrate and synthesize leadership theory and practice, management theory and practice, music organization development, music organization financial management, and intellectual property management to be informed and efficient managers in the music industry; and
2. Students should be able to apply and synthesize theories and practice from divergent disciplines to the music industry.

Students should be able to:

1. apply core fundamentals of leadership theory and practice applied to the music industry;
2. integrate leadership theories and practices as evidenced in literature reviews, empirical research studies, conceptual models, and case studies within the music industry; and
3. apply leadership theories and practices to the music industry directly via the creation of music organizations.

Students should be able to:

1. describe various models for the organization, operation and sustaining of music organizations;
2. examine management practices within a wide variety of music and entertainment organizations; and
3. apply learned managerial theories through organization creation, simulations and group presentations.

Students should be able to:

1. describe how a music organization is structured and operated;
2. explain the core legal and fiduciary requirements for a music organization relative to ensuring necessary resources; and
3. write essential organizational documentation such as articles of incorporation, bylaws and business plans.

Students should be able to:

1. identify the core concepts of accounting for a music organization; and
2. integrate the dynamics of establishing a system for financial management including, but not limited to, a chart of accounts, 3. financial statements, risk policy, and internal control policy.

Students should be able to:

1. explain the core concepts of copyright, trademark and patent law associated with music organizations;
2. describe the management of intellectual property within music organizations; and
3. apply intellectual property theory to the monetization and protection of musical compositions.

View University Course Catalog

Interests of Music Industry Leadership, MS Students

  • business
  • copyright
  • entrepreneurship
  • intellectual property
  • leadership
  • marketing
  • music
  • music entrepreneurship
  • music management
  • organizational leadership

Co-op Opportunities

  • Aircraft Music Library
    Boston, MA
  • Harvard Law School
    Cambridge, MA
  • Island Record
    Providence, RI
  • Riptide
    Culver City, CA
View all co-ops for Music

Career Opportunities

  • Multidisciplinary Skills
    • Research and analysis
    • Management
    • Marketing skills
    • Financial skills
    • Business ethics
    • Familiarity with intellectual property regulations
  • Careers of Tomorrow
    • artist manager
    • record label
    • music publisher
    • attorney
    • attorney
    • promoter
    • booking agent
    • social media
    • entrepreneur
    • music licensing
    • music supervision

Music Industry Leadership, MS Requirements

The program consists of 33 credit hours. Students complete five required courses and six electives.

*For complete program course listing, visit the University course catalog.

Resources for Current Students

Course Catalog

Visit the Registrar website for a course catalog and information on university core requirements.

View University Course Catalog

Program Coordinators:

Daniel Strong Godfrey

Department Chair, Professor


Cathy Bright

Graduate Enrollment Manager

Co-op Advisors:

Craig Bettinson, EDM

Co-op Faculty Coordinator

View Music faculty and staff