Grammy Award-winning songwriter and record producer, Bryan-Michael Cox, recently spoke to rolling out and shared career advice with high school students and their parents.
What should parents do to help a high school student make the best choice for their careers?
Stress the importance of education. Literacy, being articulate, and demonstrating the capacity to learn by completing secondary education are more important than ever. This generation needs to be able to point to a specialized skill set at a much younger age and education is the key to being able to accomplish that. I’ve been very blessed to have a successful career in entertainment, but I would love it if parents would drive home the fact that their children have a greater chance of success in the finance industry than entertainment.
How did you feel when you saw students perform live in front of you?
What I realized is that his generation has a greater chance to take advantage of opportunities because technology is on their side. It’s possible to actually produce an entire song on your iPad and they know that. Now the thing that I try to communicate effectively to kids is that it’s so important that they embrace technology to its fullest capability because content is now equally as important as talent. Whereas 10 years ago, I was interested in hearing the greatest singer in the room, now I’m looking for that kid who can develop an app.
Bryan, you were honest about hard work and the amount of time it takes to succeed. How do you think your honesty helped the students?
It absolutely helped because the students took my words and immediately converted them into action. The young lady who stood up and told me that she was an entertainment manager [at age 16] and took advantage of the moment by inviting me to one of her events, if she’s putting in the work as a manager at such a young age and is so aggressive now, then she’s already embraced the concept of long hard work. I think the other students saw my positive reaction and realized how effective putting in the work can be, especially if an opportunity presents itself. This young lady was obviously working toward her dream long before she met Bryan-Michael Cox.