Did You Know?

Photo by Bill Gallery
  Photo by Bill Gallery

Berklee is the largest college of music in the world, with 3,800 students from more than 70 countries enrolled this year. The next largest music school, classical or contemporary, has less than half this number. Berklee's size allows its students from around the world to experience a variety of musical styles, with each musician adding his or her own flavor to the mix.

Berklee has the largest percentage (26%) of international undergraduate students of any college or university in the United States. Approximately 17 percent of our students are from Asia, 12 percent from Europe, and 11 percent from other countries around the world.

There are over 300 students in the Music Production and Engineering major alone, working in more recording studios in one location east of the Mississippi, except for New York City.

The college was the first to wed America's popular music with the rigorous educational approach of a conservatory, basing all instruction on jazz. Previously, there had been no structured approach to teaching jazz; in fact, all musical training had been based on the European, classical model.

A recent survey of alumni who graduated from Berklee in the last 10 years indicates that 86 percent of our alumni are working in the music field. The corresponding average for classical conservatories is around 10 percent. Berklee alumni not only play their chosen instruments, but they compose, arrange, run recording sessions, score films, teach, and work in the business end of the music industry, along with a myriad of other music-related professions.

The Berklee Learning Center and Stan Getz Media Center and Library combine to form the world's largest networked computer facility designed for music education.

The college was the first to recognize and accept the guitar as a principal instrument, developing a contemporary music curriculum for it in the early 1960s. The college currently has 1,000 students enrolled as guitar principals; more guitarists than most music schools have students!

In 1984, Berklee established the world's first college-level major in Electronic Production and Design. Today, the college is the world leader in preparing students for the digital music environment, in which music is ever more portable and pliable, and where many projects can be fully realized by a single, highly-trained individual.

The college established the world's first college-level Songwriting major. An intensive curriculum helps the student build a personal songwriting based on advanced skills in lyric writing, melody, harmony, and arranging.

Responding to the explosion in popularity of Latin music, Berklee established the world's first college-level principal in Hand Percussion in 1993. The college counts some of the world's top hand percussionists among its faculty.

Film scoring was first developed as a full-fledged degree program at Berklee, including both the compositional and technical components of the discipline. Today, the worldwide film and video industry relies on the expertise of more than 800 Berklee-trained film composers.

Berklee now offers twelve majors, each leading to a diploma or the degree of Bachelor of Music. Classes in Berklee's new major — Music Therapy — began in September of 1996.

Each year over 350 student and faculty ensembles present over 700 concerts in the college's five performance halls. Every concert is open to the public.

Graduates of the college's Music Business/Management major can enter a special, accelerated MBA program at Boston's Suffolk University, which waives nearly a semester's worth of requirements, based on their Berklee course work in the major.

Overall, 65 percent of Berklee students receive financial aid.

(The college accepts no sponsorship dollars from liquor or tobacco companies.)

Berklee is well thought of on Wall Street, currently carrying investment grade credit ratings of A from Moody's and A+ from Standard and Poor's. This reflects the market attractiveness of the college as well as an appreciation of its financial strength.

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