Kennesaw State University named top music business school by Billboard

Kennesaw, GA | October 25, 2022

Kennesaw State University’s Joel A. Katz Music and Entertainment Business Program (MEBUS) has once again been featured in Billboard Magazine’s fourth consecutive ranking among the world’s top university music business programs.

In a recently released report on the top music business schools for 2022, Kennesaw State University was ranked among the top 38 music business schools in the world, along with other distinguished programs such as Berklee College of Music, New York University and Abbey Road College in London. KSU’s MEBUS program was launched in 2010.

“We are honored that a project as young as ours is once again recognized by the Billboard,” said Keith Perissi, Executive Director of the MEBUS Project. “From the beginning, we have been committed to creating opportunities to prepare our students for all aspects of the entertainment industry. This recognition is a tribute to our program, our university, and our program namesake Joel Katz An honor for (Joel Katz).”

Billboard rankings are based on entertainment industry recommendations, alumni information and specific program details. In honoring MEBUS and other projects, the publication noted, “These young men and women run all aspects of the campus record label, develop business plans for career development, engage in data analysis, and start from representing the highest levels of the music industry, whether artists or high-level artists. Tube.”


Part of the Michael J. Coles School of Business, the 24-credit MEBUS certificate program teaches students to thrive entrepreneurship in fast-paced film, television, and audio production, as well as artists, venues, live event management, and entertainment. In 2020, MEBUS expanded to include an 18-credit undergraduate minor.

Billboard praised the MEBUS program for providing students with a real-world entertainment experience, with a special emphasis on the MEBUS Mixer event held each semester at the MadLife Stage and Studio near Woodstock, Georgia. At that event, 25 student artists performed on stage for an audience of 250, with MEBUS students planning and executing.

“The mixer was produced by our associate director, Danny Howes, and the students helped with every aspect of the production,” Perissi said. “It’s a way for our student performers, stage managers, promoters and audiovisual producers to learn all aspects of production and stagecraft.”

Mentoring from working professionals is also an important part of the MEBUS program. Classes are taught by entertainment industry executives, professional actors, and Grammy-winning recording artists and producers. Among the faculty are Steven Morrison, MadLife’s production manager and chief engineer, who teaches audio production at the venue, and attorney Amy Oraefo, who leads the entertainment industry law course. MEBUS students are also working with the Coles College Dean’s Office on a new podcast project.

“The experience of participating in the program is one in a million,” says MEBUS student Sammy Fodroczi. “It has been a gift to be able to go directly into the industry with so many talented professionals and gain valuable knowledge from them. The opportunities that come through this project have prepared me for so many amazing careers in the music and entertainment industry. Work ready, and I feel like this project is one of the biggest investments I’ve made for the future.”

Billboard’s recognition of MEBUS also highlights KSU’s treasure trove of musical memorabilia for the show by legendary entertainment industry attorney Joel Katz. Autographed photographs, platinum records, and instruments of artists such as Michael Jackson, James Brown, Whitney Houston, and others—all Katz’s clients—turn the MEBUS building into a museum of music history.

The MEBUS program continues to grow each year as partnerships with the entertainment industry create opportunities for students, and new music and entertainment business minors open the program to a wider range of students.

“We’re proud to be an interdisciplinary project,” Perisi said. “Entertainment involves all professions and disciplines. In this way, we are a microcosm of the entertainment industry.”

—Patrick Harbin
Photos by Gabby McMahon

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A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its nearly 43,000 students. Kennesaw State University has 11 colleges on two metropolitan campuses in Atlanta and is a member of the University System of Georgia. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global connections and entrepreneurial spirit attract students from across the country and the world. Kennesaw State University is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), an elite group of only 6% of colleges and universities in the United States with R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit

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