Catching Flights to Catch Class

And you think you have a hectic schedule.

Last quarter, IPR student Jordan Doswell started the best part of his week on Friday mornings when he would catch a flight from Minneapolis to Atlanta. He jumped on the train, dropped his bags off at a relative’s house and began his 30-minute commute downtown to his internship at 11th Street Studios.

All weekend he’d work 4:00 p.m. to close, though there’s not really a “close” time, he said. “You know how artists are,” he said, smiling. “One time I had to stay until 4:00 a.m., and my flight back to Minneapolis was at 7:30 a.m.” Jordan’s first class at IPR started at 3 p.m..

“I don’t really get much time before class,” Jordan said.

But for Jordan, the experience of learning firsthand how a studio runs – and earning college credit for it – was worth the crazy schedule.

Jordan’s duties at the studio varied from day to day. Cleaning the studio was usually first on his list, followed by giving input on songs to the assistant engineer. He also did food runs for artists and did “basically anything the artist needed,” he said. Throughout the quarter he saw Lil Scrappy, Black Elvis, David Banner and others come to the studio.

“It’s crazy who comes in. I have to keep my cool sometimes, and then after they leave, I kind of freak out a bit,” Jordan said.

Jordan said his mentor and owner of the studio, Edward Nixon, felt there weren’t enough legitimate engineers in the industry, so he decided to mold Jordan and three other interns this quarter into the type of engineer he would want to hire. In addition to asking the interns to work in the studio, Jordan said Nixon also required the interns to attend a class every Sunday at noon. The class covered studio etiquette, acoustics, sound deflection and more.

The class and internship are the perfect follow up to his IPR classes, he said. “The classes you take the first quarter give you the base knowledge of everything,” Jordan said. “IPR emphasizes that you have to put yourself out there and go after it.”

This is exactly what Jordan did. He followed Edward Nixon on Instagram after seeing his bio online and thinking it sounded impressive. He noticed that Nixon always seemed to talk back to his followers, so one day Jordan decided to message him.

“I just said, ‘I’d love an opportunity to intern for you,’” Jordan said. “He said something crazy like make sure you want to dedicate your life to this and then asked for my resume.”

Coincidentally, Jordan said, he had just finished IPR’s Career Planning class and had a resume all primed. Nixon told him he usually does face-to-face interviews, but because his resume and cover letter were so good, he’d hire him without doing so.

Lucky for Jordan, his mother was a former flight attendant, so flights to Atlanta were free. If it weren’t for that, he said, he wouldn’t have been able to take the opportunity to both intern in Atlanta and finish up his degree in Minneapolis.

“I’d have been crazy to pass it up,” he said. “If music is something that you love to do, there are definitely opportunities out there—and IPR is a good way to get your foot in the door.”

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