Scholarships Awarded to Diverse Group of Exceptional College Students Pursuing Music Industry Careers
(LOS ANGELES – July 7, 2021) —Live Nation, the world’s leading live entertainment company, in partnership with the nonprofit Music Forward Foundation, today announced the recipients of its 2021 scholarship awards. Five outstanding college students pursuing music industry careers have been awarded a total of $45,000 in scholarships.
This year’s diverse group of gifted scholarship recipients were selected based on academic performance, leadership skills and a passionate commitment to the live entertainment experience. Recipients of this year’s awards include Holly Grace Jamili, a student at New York University, who is a Recorded Music major with a minor in Entertainment, Media, & Technology and a focus on elevating live music experiences through technological innovation; Tandrea Hawkins, a Music Business major and Hip Hop studies minor at Columbia College Chicago, a self-managed rapper who also runs a platform for underground college artists to showcase their artistry; Jalen Holloway, an Arts Leadership and Administration major and Music minor at Queens University of Charlotte, a veteran and multi-instrumentalist who has made dean’s list every semester of his college career; Kayla Erhardt, a Music Business major and Marketing minor at Berklee College of Music, who is finding recent success with her original music placed in television network shows; and Will Keebler, a Minnesota State University-Mankato junior, with a passion for live entertainment who leads outdoor live music events on campus.
“Live Nation is committed to supporting the future of live entertainment through our unique scholarship program,” said Mark Campana, chief operating officer, Live Nation Concerts. “We are dedicated to amplifying voices and providing opportunities for the next generation as we return to live and beyond.”
Holly Grace Jamili, a 20-year-old junior at New York University majoring in Recorded Music with a minor in Entertainment, Media, & Technology, is this year’s recipient of the $10,000 Steven J. Finkel Service Excellence Scholarship. The scholarship was established to award students who are passionate about improving the live music experience for fans and artists.
Jamili, from Los Angeles, California, is a Tisch School of the Arts Dean’s Scholar and has served as marketing chair for the NYU Program Board. While pursuing her Recorded Music degree, she has held entertainment internship positions at Paradigm Talent Agency, The Orchard, ViacomCBS and is currently a Touring & Events intern at Columbia Records. Her course work and internship experience are focused on the metaverse and the use of technology to connect fans and artists leading to new immersive experiences for the live music customer.
“This scholarship is a representation of the support I have received from family, friends, advisors, teachers, and every colleague I have met at my internships that have helped me come this far academically and professionally,” said Jamili. “The Steven J. Finkel Service Excellence Scholarship reassures me that I have the potential to leave an impact on the future of the music industry.”
The $10,000 Tiffany Green Operator Scholarship was established by Live Nation to support women pursuing careers in live entertainment. This year’s recipient is Chicago, Illinois native Tandrea Hawkins, a 20-year old senior at Columbia College Chicago and talented independent artist. Hawkins, a Music Business major with a concentration in Artist Management and a minor in Hip Hop Studies, maintains a 3.9 GPA. She has held Artist Relations and Social Media internship positions with Music Forward Foundation and Chicago’s WVON and has also performed on the Citi See Her, Hear Her stage at Governor’s Ball in 2019.
A first generation college student, Hawkins has been producing live events highlighting young artists since she was in high-school and in 2020 she co-founded Fusion of Light Entertainment, a platform for college students, by college students dedicated to showcasing underground young artists in Chicago.
“Receiving this scholarship lets me know that there are people who believe in me and my plans for the music industry,” said Hawkins. “It means that I have more of a responsibility to continue doing my very best in executing my vision, and I cannot wait to see what I am able to make of it!”
Jalen Holloway, 21, a junior at Queens University of Charlotte pursuing a Bachelor of Arts Leadership and Administration, is the recipient of the 2021 $10,000 Live Nation Scholarship. This scholarship supports students pursuing careers in the five core areas of Live Nation’s business: concert and venue promotion, sponsorship and advertising, ticketing, e-commerce, and artist management.
Holloway, from Summerville, South Carolina, has a 3.8 GPA. He is a multi-instrumentalist playing guitar and violin and has been a first chair violinist on multiple occasions. While a student at Queens University of Charlotte, Holloway has also served as a member of the United States Army Reserves and as President of the Alpha Tau Omega Colony fraternity. He has received enthusiastic praise from his professors for being meticulous, versatile, and an encouraging team player.
“This scholarship means everything to me,” said Holloway. “It will greatly assist me by alleviating financial burden, allowing me to focus on aligning my passion, knowledge, and understanding of music to elevate me into my future career.”
Kayla Erhardt, a Music Business major and Marketing minor at Berklee College of Music, is the recipient of the $10,000 David E. Ballard Scholarship funded by the Living Legacy Foundation. This scholarship supports youth who have experienced homelessness and/or been part of the foster care system and are pursuing a career in live entertainment.
Erhardt, from Las Vegas, Nevada, while working toward her Bachelor of Music, has been a participant of the inaugural cohort of Diversify the Stage, a 2019 scholarship recipient of VocalizeU, and is active as a Mental Health and Wellness Peer Educator on the Berklee campus. The 20-year-old sophomore, has received accolades from her professors for her strong drive to overcome adversity, love for learning, and innate artistic ability. As a talented songwriter and performer, Erhardt has had original music placed in two Warner Bros. television shows.
“My entire life I had believed that I couldn’t pursue certain goals or have the same opportunities as others due to a lack of financial support and home stability,” said Erhardt. “Receiving this scholarship has changed my perspective in the overall pursuit of my goals. I hope that others who feel that they are in the same position as I once was, are able to look at my accomplishment as something they are capable of achieving as well.”
Will Keebler, a 21-year-old junior at Minnesota State University- Mankato, is the recipient of the $5,000 Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union Scholarship, a dedicated award from Minnesota-based Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union, which is designated for a Minnesota college student pursuing a career related to the music industry.
Keebler, from Brooklyn Park, Minnesota, is a Music Industry major and Communications minor with a 3.85 GPA. Keebler has been elected twice as the Concert Company Chair for the MNSU Student Events Team programming board. In this position, he has led the planning and production of several live music events on campus including outdoor concerts and the annual homecoming concert which allowed him to work with professionals in the industry and gain hands-on experience in live event production while still in school. Keebler also serves as the President of the MavHouse Records student group, a recognized student organization that serves the Music Industry department by working with students to create, release, and promote their music.
“This scholarship reaffirms my decision to pursue an education and career in the music industry,” said Keebler. “Going into a career in music often comes with uncertainty but being selected for this scholarship boosts my confidence that I am on the right path towards a successful music industry career.
Scholarship selections were made by an influential panel of executives and thought leaders across entertainment, civic and corporate sectors. Reviewers included leading experts from companies and organizations across the country including Live Nation, Epidemic Sound, Jenex Entertainment, City National Bank, Discover Financial Systems, Microsoft, EPAM Systems, Inc. and the American Heart Association.
“We are proud to recognize this year’s esteemed scholarship award recipients and support their career journeys in the music industry,” said Nurit Siegel Smith, executive director of the Music Forward Foundation. “Together, with our partners, we aim to transform young lives by breaking barriers of gender, poverty, and race into the industry and bridge them to pathways of success.”
About Live Nation Entertainment
Live Nation Entertainment (NYSE: LYV) is the world’s leading live entertainment company comprised of global market leaders: Ticketmaster, Live Nation Concerts, and Live Nation Media & Sponsorships. For additional information, visit livenationentertainment.com.
About Music Forward Foundation
Music Forward transforms young lives, inspires careers, and champions a more inclusive music industry. Music Forward bridges our communities to the music industry, empowers ambition, and creates momentum to redefine what is possible for the youth and industry we serve. Music Forward invites everyone to play a part in moving culture forward; join the movement by following @MusicForward and learn more at musicforwardfoundation.org.
About Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union
Based in St. Paul, Minn., Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union is a not-for-profit, financial cooperative that puts people first above profits. Members of Affinity Plus receive maximum value through competitive rates, minimal fees, and unique, member-centric products and programs. Established in 1930, Affinity Plus has 28 branches located throughout Minnesota and is owned by more than 200,000 members. Affinity Plus has over $2 billion in assets. Additional information is available at www.affinityplus.org or by calling (800) 322-7228.