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Interested in a career as an attorney in the music biz? The University of Miami just might have the program for you. UM’s School of Law and its Frost School of Music have launched a joint program offering students a joint J.D. and a master’s degree in music business and entertainment industries. The program, the school says, is the first of its kind. “To be successful in this industry, you have to understand how it works,” said Serona Elton, an attorney and assistant professor at the Frost School of Music who is overseeing the new program. “Our joint program enables a student to integrate a strong legal foundation with an in-depth understanding of the business practices of the music industry.” The music business operates quite differently than do areas such as real estate or banking, Elton said. For example, a recording agreement may be 70 pages long and contain highly specialized content, she said. In addition to J.D. coursework, students in the joint program will focus on common practices in the music business, including royalties, music copyright law, international music licensing and analysis of music industry agreements. Additionally, students will be required to complete an internship in the music industry. Miami’s reputation as a hotbed of the industry — the Latin American divisions of all the major music labels are based in the city — means that students will have good internship opportunities, Elton said. She expects to admit eight students per year into the joint degree program, which will debut next academic year. Academically aggressive students can complete the program within three years if they choose to take summer classes, while other student may finish within 3 1/2 or four years. The law school is accepting applications for the program through April 1.

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