Press Release

June 25, 2014

Groove U’s Central Location Paired With Columbus’ Flourishing Music Scene Provides Opportunity for Students Across Midwest

COLUMBUS, Ohio (June 25, 2014) — Students with their sights set on a career in the music
industry no longer have to travel cross-country to New York, Los Angeles or Orlando to
receive a world-class education and career opportunities. GROOVE U’s two-year music
industry career program is centrally located in Columbus, Ohio — within a one-day drive or
one-hour flight of nearly half the population of the U.S. and Canada.

“GROOVE U takes an entirely new approach to music industry higher education,” said
Dwight Heckelman, founder and director. “We work directly with employers in the music
industry, who tell us exactly what skills they expect from the next generation of industry

The curriculum is guided by veteran music industry professionals, and taught by highlyqualified
instructors using a unique, hands-on career-centered approach to learning. The
GROOVE U advisory panel consists of a Grammy-winning mastering engineer, a multimillion
record-selling artist, top executives representing a record label and music and
video production, entertainment attorneys, artist promoters, festival planners and more.

The panel meets several times a year to review curriculum, and make adjustments based
on industry hiring trends. The ability to adjust curriculum in real-time ensures GROOVE U’s
students remain on the cutting-edge of the ever-changing music industry.

In 2010, Heckelman leased a former elementary school building in the heart of the city’s
Short North Arts District, and began a $1.3 million transformation. Doors to the 30,000-ft²
creative campus officially opened in August 2012. The state-of-the-art facility is equipped
with two recording studios, ten production suites, classrooms, a video suite, a career
development center and a performance space.

GROOVE U is founded on the principles that the music industry is creatively engaged,
apprenticeship-based, and most of all, relationship-driven. Students learn the
fundamentals of the music industry, then specialize in areas like: audio production, live
sound, music business, music video production and interactive development.

Students quickly get to work applying the knowledge they acquire with hands-on,
community-driven projects. Within the first two weeks of the fall 2013 term, students were
fast at work at the Breakaway Music Festival — managing load-in and load-out, greeting
media and assisting festival promoters. Other community projects have included recording
a high school steel drum band, working as stage hands and running sound at local music
festivals, and no doubt the largest project of the year, Instaband, central Ohio’s only high
school battle of the bands.

Recently back from the annual trek to Austin for the South by Southwest (SXSW) Music
Conference & Festival, students are feeling inspired by all the sessions, showcases and
music industry connections they encountered. GROOVE U requires students to complete
two summer internships before they receive their diploma, and networking at SXSW helps
them find the best ones.

There is no lack of opportunity when it comes time for GROOVE U students to find
summer internships and land jobs after graduation. The music industry is one of the fastest
growing career fields according the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, and Columbus is a
virtual hotbed of music, with the potential of being the next big music city. Columbus is
home to two major arenas, more than 100 live music venues and about 25 annual music
festivals. In 2013, Columbus hosted more than 2,000 national, regional and local acts,
featuring top pop, rock, hip-hop and country artists. Supporting these artists behind the
scenes are at least 50 local recording studios and production companies.

“The music industry is hard, and success comes from talent, knowledge and experience,”
said Brian Lucey, Grammy-winning mastering engineer at Magic Garden Mastering. “When
a student stays in Columbus to learn, work and create, they help the city to grow creatively
and economically.”

GROOVE U still has a few coveted spaces open for Fall 2014. Apply online at, and call (614) 291-6122 to schedule a campus tour and personal one-onone
with GROOVE U representatives.


GROOVE U is a revolutionary music industry career program located in the Short North
Arts District of Columbus, Ohio. The two-year program uses a career-centered approach to
learning developed by active industry professionals, and is guided by the philosophy that
the music industry is creatively engaged, apprenticeship-based and relationshipdriven.
Classes are small and personalized and offer both broad, foundational knowledge
and specialized areas of music study in: production, live, business, video and interactive.
With a 4:1 lab:class ratio, students have plenty of hands-on opportunities to hone in their
skills. Students can directly plug-in to both the local and global music communities
through trips to music conferences, on-campus speakers and two guided internships.
The school officially opened its 30,000-ft² creative campus in September 2012, and is
currently enrolling for Fall 2014. Want to connect with us? Please contact GROOVE U if you
have internship opportunities, would like to sponsor a student or want to be considered as
a guest speaker. To learn more, schedule a campus tour and one-on-one meeting today.