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Berklee Institute of Jazz Partners With New Music USA for an Apprenticeship program that aims to increase diversity and inclusion

Music mentorship has always been a factor in training young and upcoming musicians in their field and within the jazz community. There is also a long history of apprentices in the music scene though with the increasing diversity in apprenticeships across the country and within the music industry organizations like The Berklee Institute of Jazz as well as New Music USA have announced a new partnership aiming to level the playing field by promoting apprenticeship opportunities for women and non-binary musicians. The program will span over a three-year period supporting 20 participants in its first-ever class funded by the support of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

“In an announcement of the program this morning, New Music USA cited a recent analysis of the NPR Music Jazz Critics Poll, which confirmed that women have constituted a small percentage of the personnel on albums receiving critical acclaim. Appraising the situation, Carrington explains: "Next Jazz Legacy amplifies and addresses the need for all musicians, practitioners, and professionals in jazz to contribute to a more equitable jazz future. Vanessa Reed, president, and CEO of New Music USA notes that more than half of the organization's grant funding already goes to women and non-binary artists. "However, we know that some of the inequities in our community can't be resolved with grant funding alone," she adds. "Next Jazz Legacy addresses this by providing experience on the road, promotion, and opportunities for participants to learn and grow with other artists at similar stages in their career." 

Each apprentice who participates in this program will receive a $10,000 stipend as well as be fully set up and supported with a one-year apprenticeship with a professional musician in the industry who will provide valuable experience and mentorship. The program will also combine classroom coursework on top of the on-the-job training that will be conducted online and also give students a variety of educational support that will help them along as their program progresses.


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