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September 30, 2010

ULM student’s internship provides peek into music industry

Damar “DJ” Jackson, a senior mass communication major at the University of Louisiana at Monroe, is spending his last semester not in the classroom, but interning with Def Jam Records in Atlanta.

The Island Def Jam Music Group is home to a diverse family of artists - from today's icons to tomorrow's rising stars - and is recognized as one of the most successful labels in the industry, according to its website.

Artists signed with the label include Justin Bieber, Kanye West, Ludacris and more.

Jackson, a native of DeRidder, near Lake Charles, says he is gaining knowledge that will lead him in the right direction for his career. His internship has given him the opportunity to learn about the many aspects of the music industry – from the studio to the office and promotional meetings.

Jackson says that breaking into the industry can be a long process. He adds, “You have to be patient in the music industry and make all the right moves to remain relevant and successful.”

Jackson believes that his ULM education has prepared him well for the real world. He says understanding copyright infringement, as well as successful networking and public speaking skills are important to have in the music industry.

Jackson hopes to be offered a position with Def Jam/Konvict Muzik after his internship is complete so he might pursue a long-held dream of a career in music. Some on campus may remember Jackson was the opening act for Ludacris last spring at Fant-Ewing Coliseum.

Jackson will remain in Atlanta until Dec. 8 and is required to perform a total of 150 hours to complete his internship. He said he enjoys learning from others who have gone before him.

“Seeing the success of other people encourages me to work hard so I can be successful, too,” he said. “It’s a blessing to be here.”

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