“My best advice is to think broadly about all the skills you’ve learned through music and the opportunities out there to apply them. Your training has equipped you with a vast set of unique experiences—teamwork from chamber music playing, discipline from perfecting etudes, presentation skills from regularly performing on stage.”
Alumna Courtney Hedgecock, B.Mus.Ed. 2020, has taken her training as a musician and launched into a career in business and technology. Recently, she made the decision to return to school to get her MBA from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business.
Amidst these new horizons, her love for music still continues as she regularly plays her cello for gigs across the Triangle. We caught up with her to learn more about her life post-graduation and how music and business have intersected for her.
UNC Music: What have you been up to since graduating?
CH: Since graduating from UNC, I have been living in Raleigh and working as a Project Manager at Cisco! Over the last three years, I’ve led projects ranging from delivering services to public sector customers to running my division’s intern and new grad program. Cisco was an amazing entry point for me into the worlds of business and technology.
UNC Music: What made you decide to go back to school and how does this new degree fit into your career goals?
CH: I recently decided to go back to school to get my Master of Business Administration (MBA) from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University. I really enjoyed my time at Cisco but was looking to gain more knowledge around business strategy and felt that getting my MBA would help me get there by broadening my skillset and developing my personal leadership style. I’m about a month into the experience and I’m loving it! (And still wearing my UNC shirts around Duke’s campus of course).
UNC Music: What role does music continue to play in your life post-graduation?
CH: My love for music will never fade. These days, I frequently perform gigs as a solo cellist around the Triangle and play with some church groups. I’m looking forward to getting more involved in Duke’s music department as I get settled into campus.
UNC Music: What advice do you have for current music students?
CH: My best advice is to think broadly about all the skills you’ve learned through music and the opportunities out there to apply them. Your training has equipped you with a vast set of unique experiences—teamwork from chamber music playing, discipline from perfecting etudes, and presentation skills from regularly performing on stage. As I pursue my MBA, I know that every day, I’m leveraging the strengths I gained from my time in the UNC Department of Music.
Interview by Catherine Zachary, B.Mus. 2010