Music has been a constant element in Athena Koumis’s life since she began playing the violin when she was 4 years old. She has since performed and recorded with several orchestras and bands, and in college began DJing and producing music. “I felt that I needed to be more informed of what was going on in the industry and wanted to learn from experts in the field while widening my professional network. Naturally, I chose Berklee.” Originally from Sacramento, California, Koumis obtained her bachelor's degree from Humboldt State University, and in 2013 she graduated from Berklee's master’s degree program in global entertainment and music business. She is now working at Spotify.
What is your fondest memory of your time at Berklee's campus in Valencia, Spain?
Jumping in the Mediterranean for a quick swim before classes. I miss those mornings.
How has your Berklee experience influenced you as a professional?
Berklee opened my eyes to the multitude of career paths within the music industry and helped me realize my professional goals. As a magnet for talent from all over the world, Berklee also furthered my appreciation for diversity of perspectives and experiences.
Tell us about your work at Spotify and how Berklee prepared you for it.
At Spotify, I curate cultural data, provide feedback on the results of various recommendation algorithms, and manage the QA/curation internship program.
By facilitating direct access to industry professionals, challenging case studies, consulting, and research projects, Berklee Valencia prepared me with a deep understanding of the growing digital music industry and shifting music consumption patterns. The education and opportunities I took advantage of (such as working with Rethink Music) played a crucial role in preparing me for my career.
Watch Koumis in action at her new role as an editor at Spotify, as featured by Buzzfeed:
This profile was written by Brian Gonzalez. See the original story on our valencia.berklee.edu site.