Honours Music, 2014

MeaghanWhen deciding where she would like to go to school, Meaghan McCracken felt drawn to the music program here at the University of Waterloo. Her experiences were more interdisciplinary. She feels had she gone somewhere else she never would have had the opportunity to take some of the classes she loved! She says, “It let me explore other things I was interested in, like English Literature and Anthropology. The breadth requirements also got me to take courses in subjects I would never have thought I'd enjoy, but ended up taking a lot away from, like Earth Sciences.” These classes weren’t the only thing Meaghan loved about the school. She enjoyed taking part in the Grebel community and making connections with students and staff alike. She recalls a favourite memory of, “…decorating the Christmas tree in the lower Atrium with other music students every year!” Meaghan graduated in 2014 with a bachelors in Honours Music, but don't be mistaken and think she had her life all figured out before that date.

Like many, when she entered university Meaghan had no clue what she wanted to do once her undergrad was over. She happened to stumble upon her current job later in her undergrad, she remembers it as a “Late-night life crisis” as she hunted for her dream job, she says:

“I was googling upcoming auditions for orchestras and had somehow found a listing of arts administration job openings.” Meaghan saw the posting for the Music Librarian and felt immediately that it was the job for her. She then discussed the idea with Grebel Instructor Barb, who taught Meaghan in her studio class for flute. It so happened that Barb knew the librarian at the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony. Barb mentioned that he was always looking for help, and Meaghan jumped on the chance to volunteer. After volunteering for a year, which allowed her to learn what the job entails, the librarian moved to Vancouver. Meaghan immediately applied to take over the vacancy. The rest is history and today Meaghan is still the Librarian for the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony and she couldn’t be happier.

Today she enjoys the many perks of her job, she enjoys being close to the action but behind the scenes. She often works closely with very talented musicians, and she gets to work with come celebrities every now and again. Meaghen enjoys her work and says her favourite part as “Getting to be an important part of the logistical process of putting a concert together and then the subsequent satisfaction at the end of the concert when the audience is giving a standing ovation.”

Meaghan has several plans for the future. Including heading back to school to get a master’s degree, in what exactly she isn’t quite sure! As well, she would enjoy working as a librarian at a big rental company like Disney. For students interested in a job in an arts administrative position, Meaghan has some sage advice:

Do lots of research. There are many jobs in arts administration that people don't tell you about, but are very important! It's a great way to be right in the heart of the music field without necessarily being a performer.