Kameon Prather is a name you will likely hear in the future. The North Gwinnett High School graduate has already had experience at MTV Studios in New York City and is the co-founder of a promising music production and engineering company—thanks to the opportunities afforded him by the Terry College of Business and Terry’s Music Certification in Music Business.
North Gwinnett High School
BBA in Management, BBA in Management Information Systems, Certification in Music Business
University highlights, achievements, awards and scholarships:
Facilitator, Georgia Leadership Institute for School Improvement: In my first two years at UGA, I volunteered at the GLISI Institute and presented to high school administrators regarding the importance and impact of student leadership. I also facilitated training exercises to these professionals and conducted surveys for the Gwinnett County and Fulton County public school systems.
Project director and producer, Team E.C.S.T.A.C.Y, LLC: In my first year at UGA, I founded a music production firm focused on product development, production, recording, tracking, studio booking and session transfers. Our clients range from recording artists to multimedia firms.
Resident advisor, Terry Business Academy: In the summer of 2010, I supervised and managed appropriate conduct and behavior of participants and counseled them through corporate leadership training exercises.
C.L.A.S.S. advocate: During the 2010-2011 academic year, I mentored 32 undergraduate residents living in the Russell Community. As a staff member, I organized and advertized monthly social, recreational, personal development, diversity and educational programs.
Terry College Student Ambassador: As a third year student, I was selected to represent the Terry College of Business. I promoted pride and diversity by organizing the Terry New Student Welcome Event, Terry College Alumni Awards & Gala, Alumni Tailgate, Terry Convocation and other special programming events throughout the year. Our supervisors Lisa Bedgood and Jill Walton along with the Terry Young Alumni Board have provided a successful platform to get students more involved with the academic and professional community. This year I intend to help expand the program with more innovative and successful events.
Audio engineering intern, Chase Park Transduction Studios: I was able to study the technical side of the music industry from David Barbe and Tom Lewis, assist in the maintenance of the studio with tracking instruments, maintain facilities and prepare for recording sessions. It was quite an experience being able to see my professor’s passion and how it reflects his work at UGA.
Historian and webmaster, Zeta Pi Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc.: Upon being initiated into the Zeta Pi Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. in fall 2010, I was voted as the historian and webmaster. I created and currently organize the online presence of the chapter through our website UGAAlphas.com and other social media outlets.
Music and talent intern, VIACOM/MTV Networks: In the summer of 2011, I worked for MTV at the headquarters in the middle of Times Square in NYC. This was one of the most valuable experiences I’ve ever had. I was able to meet and learn from many important executives and figures in the entertainment world along with exploring all the Big Apple has to offer. I enjoyed writing for MTV and MTV.com as well as aiding in presentations for the department as a whole. Being a part of such an exciting company reinforced my desire to pursue a career in the music business.
I am the co-founder and project director of Team E.C.S.T.A.C.Y, LLC, a music production and engineering firm focused on recording artists and the integration of music for film, TV and other media. In addition to entrepreneurship, I am a stage manager for the 2011 A3C Hip Hop Festival. This two-day, three-night event held annually in Atlanta features some of the genre’s most talented major and undiscovered artists through live music performances. The A3C also features dance, graphic art, fashion, film, producer showcases, pro audio demonstrations and music industry panels. I also remain affiliated with MTV Networks providing freelance work for the television channel.
Family Ties to UGA:
Although I am the first in my family to attend the University of Georgia, I have gained bonds with my friends, Zeta Pi brothers, faculty of the music business program and the leadership of Terry College.
I chose to attend UGA because…
…of diverse reasons. The outstanding facilities, scholarship opportunities and exceptional reputation of the Terry College of Business were major components of consideration, but another deciding factor was participating in the Georgia Daze program. This is a residential weekend visitation program for high school seniors who have been admitted to UGA; it enables students from historically underrepresented groups to experience campus life. Not only was this a great addition to making my decision, but it also served as a vessel for friendships I still maintain today.
My favorite things to do on campus are…
…to stroll through Tate Plaza and enjoy lunch with my hall mates from freshman year at the Bulldog Café — and you can always run into a friend you haven’t seen in a while walking by the MLC.
When I have free time, I like…
…to produce, record and engineer music. It’s not just my passion and future career; it’s also my hobby, and I’m blessed to enjoy something that I can turn into a living. I also like to plan events and spend free time with close friends and the brothers of Alpha Phi Alpha.
The craziest thing I’ve done is…
…take risks while working for MTV Networks. My supervisor needed assistance setting up the audio and video equipment for music producer Kasseem “Swizz Beatz” Dean, so I decided to order new speakers and set them up myself. Doing so led to eating lunch and playing my music for him at a Brooklyn studio on my first day at work. Another opportunity arose when I was asked to prepare the agenda for a meeting with recording artist Chris Brown. I was humbled by the opportunity to be in the meeting discussing his 2011 MTV Video Music Awards performance. Lastly, I was given the opportunity to be mentored by Paxton Baker, an executive vice president and general manager for BET Networks. Being able to establish and maintain a rapport with him has been a blessing to this day. The experience I have gained working for VIACOM has broadened my horizons and fueled my perspective on business practices.
My favorite place to study is…
…the Music Business Studio in Caldwell Hall. It is not a traditional study lounge, but this is what makes it appealing. Being surrounded by records, instruments and studio equipment just feels comfortable, and it is an excuse to play music on high volume without the restriction of quiet hours.
My favorite professor is…
…David Barbe, UGA music business director. He has served as a mentor the last few years in the program along with Tom Lewis, challenging me in class as well as interning at Chase Park Transduction Studios. His guidance has helped me learn the ins and outs of the industry, the implementation of engineering different types of sound and the knowledge needed to secure my first major placement opportunities. Professor Barbe has helped create an atmosphere conducive to professional learning in a comfortable, interactive and fun environment.
If I could share an afternoon with anyone, I would love to share it with…
…my parents, Charles and Voranda Prather. It is an unconventional answer, but I feel as though amidst the hectic schedule of school, activities and business, it would be nice to spend more quality time with the two people who wholeheartedly believe in me and are unconditionally committed to helping me realize my dreams.
If I knew I could not fail, I would…
…keep living life like God planned it. I feel that failure is never an option, and sometimes the best successes come out of learning from mistakes. Living in fear of defeat only prepares you to fail—but if you are positive, hard-working and sincere, most of the time success happens naturally. It sounds political, but it has held true for my life.
After graduation, I plan to…
…relocate to New York City, where I aspire to work for a multimedia company as a music coordinator or a major recording label as a music producer and audio engineer.
The one UGA experience I will always remember will be…
…the Terry College Alumni Awards & Gala. This was a blessing that rose from my involvement as a Terry Student Ambassador. I was able to network and converse with movers and shakers of the University of Georgia. It was also the event that led me to meet VIACOM CFO Jimmy Barge (BBA ‘78), who presented me with the opportunity to work for MTV’s music and talent operations department at the headquarters in New York City and live with his family. It has led to the most promising opportunities in my life so far and opened the doors to a promising career in the entertainment industry.