Sara Lavocat

Sara Lavocat
"The only thing that matters in this business isn't what you want to do, or what you think you can do; it's what you have done. If you want to succeed, your work has to be able to speak for itself"

Fredonia graduate Sara Lavocat is proof that hard work and first impressions can either make or break you in the Music Industry. Sara was hired at an entertainment company in Syracuse, NY following an online part-time internship. Her enthusiasm, hard work, and strong communication skill proved her dedication to her work and portrayed the asset she would become. Her responsibilities include a wide variety of public relations, social media, merchandise, tour preparations, and detailed research. Sara has also been provided a role as a liaison, being the primary contact between the company and representatives in other countries. Her education at Fredonia laid the groundwork, teaching her that to succeed, your work has to be able to speak for itself.

Noelle Panepento

Noelle Panepento
"Setting yourself apart academically is a start, but education alone is not enough in this industry. What you are made of --your communicative skills, organization, creativity, professionalism, attitude -- is what will set you apart in this career; and that should all be fueled by a passion for music and the motivation to take yourself there no matter what."

Noelle Panepento's comprehensive education in Music Industry from Fredonia in addition to her professionalism, creativity, and positive attitude launched her immediate music career. As a Tour Manager for up-an-coming artist out of Nashville, Jamie Tate, Panepento is responsible for everything including but not limited to; bookings, lodgings, finances, organization, timely arrivals for artists, and overseeing band's comfort and professionalism. While in Nashville, she acts as a liaison between her artists and Management Company, Production Company, and sponsors. Panepento also mails out press kits, makes contacts, books gigs, attends meetings on the artists' behalf, and writes sponsorship proposals.

Devin StanfordDevin Stanford

Devin Stanford, also known as ‘dev11n’, is a Buffalo native whose love for music is present in her aura. Since graduating in 2013, she has taken all that she’s learned from Fredonia’s Music Industry program and has personalized her own success story. Devin pursues her music career full time and has traveled all over the country to express her creativity while making a living doing what she loves. Her lyrics resonate with people from all walks of life. This past August, Devin began touring with iStandard Producer Showcase, performing in New York City, Toronto and has an upcoming show in Chicago. She is performing songs from her newest project #The11thHour which is was released on 11/11/15. Her determination, ambition and love for music are what have helped her prosper in the music industry. Quoted from her website “I’m coming to get what I want. I should have it, as long as I keep working for it.” For more on dev11n, please click the link above to be directed to her website.


Jessica Weigand

Jessica Weigand

Career: Marketing & Social Media Director for moe. / Fatboy Productions
Marketing & Management Consultant for Whitesmith Entertainment

Job Description: I handle all marketing and promotional materials for the artists I am working with. This includes coordinating with advertisors, venue promoters, festivals, photographers & videographers, merchandise directors, charity organizations, agents, possible sponsors, publicists, street teams, etc. depending on the project or focus we are aiming for. The most important part of my job is engaging and growing an artist’s fan-base which is largely done via social networks and ensuring all of the awesome work the artist is doing reaches their current and prospective fans, as well as other industry folks.

“All I knew when I was 18 was that I had to go to school in a place where I was surrounded by music. Lucky for me, that place was in-state and a short hour from home. Walking through the campus and hearing the myriad of students practicing felt right. In my job, I need to have a very large skill-set. I took an incredibly large range of classes from accounting, photoshop, recording 101, web design, statistics, and even piano and upright bass lessons. Each class gave me one more piece to the puzzle to create someone well-rounded enough to work in this crazy industry. However, the most important skill I took away from Fredonia was how to communicate and bond with other people. I’m sure you’ve heard the expression “It’s not what you know, but who you know”. That is more valid than ever in the music industry and you have to know how to bond with other industry folks to accomplish the goals of the artists you’re working with."

Jessica W1

"Make the most of all the tools Fredonia has at it’s disposal. If you want to be a manager, do it with one of the student bands. Want to book shows? Get involved with any of the clubs that put on events, or take a walk down main street and talk to some of the bar owners. If you have no idea what you want to do but love music with every last ounce of you, that’s fine too! There are tons of ways to get involved and get your feet wet in everything. Just keep hold of the passion that got you interested in the first place. The music industry is a tough field and requires a lot of off-the-wall ideas, but upon leaving Fredonia you will have both an incredibly creative mind AND be a very sharp, passionate business person; that is a lethal combination in any field.”

Jessica W2

Nick Stevens

Nick Stevens

“The program prepared me most by teaching how to network and to roll with the punches, also Armand was always full of great advice. I am currently a tour manager doing mostly freelance work for The Trep Agency; the hands on skills learned in student record label and music marketing give me more insight for knowing the best way to deal with situations that arise on the road. It's been said a thousand times but "its not just about 'being in the right place at the right time' but about PUTTING yourself in the right place at the right time.”


Izzay JayIzzy Jay

Career: Marketing and Promotions Assistant

Location: Razor & Tie Record Label

Job Description: I am responsible for coordinating professionals outside of the label to carry out various marketing and promotional functions. I work closely with the Senior Vice Presidents of the label, occasionally tending to administrative assignments.

“I thought Fredonia was beautiful. It was one of those things where I just knew that this was where I wanted to go to school. It already felt like home and when I heard how Music Industry students were finding success in their careers immediately upon graduating, I knew that the major was right for me. The music business core provided me with a thorough knowledge of intellectual property and the inner workings of the music industry. I've received many compliments from industry professionals about how impressed they are with how knowledgeable I am at my young age. Surprisingly, taking classes like Intro to Microcomputer Software from the business core of the program has helped me the most. Some employers really struggle with technology, and when you can make things more efficient for your boss they don’t forget it. The program is great, but it’s what you make of it, no matter where you go. However, the difference at Fredonia is that you have incredible resources and community there to help you. Armand’s [Department Chair] door is always open, we have an award-winning radio station, and many other awesome groups that will enhance your college experience. Fredonia is a place of self-discovery where you can make a real impact both on the campus and community alike.”

Ricky Coates

Ricky Coates

Job Title: Road Manager/Instrumentalist

Band: Survay Says

Job Description: I am responsible for planning, organizing and coordinating the band's tour schedule. I also ensure their timely arrival and departure to and from performances. Additionally, I am a trumpet player in the band.

“I actually found the music industry program by accident while visiting the campus one day. This was before the school actually advertised the program. However, I am glad that I found it because it was a program that I knew would keep me interested without having to force myself to focus. The effort you put into getting your degree and the connections you make while obtaining it reflect how well you'll do in the real world. This is an industry where they only way you're going to make a name for yourself is by making useful connections and maintaining relationships with valuable contacts. This program has the ability to take you where ever you want to go in the music industry. You've got to be willing to put in the work though I've seen a lot of people coast by and end up resorting to desk jobs that they hate. But, I put in the effort and now I tour the country doing what I love to do, and you can too.”


Music Industry Coordinator - Professor Armand Petri

W305 Thompson Hall
State University of New York at Fredonia
Fredonia, NY 14063
(716) 673-4959
(716) 673-3506 fax