Record producer 38 years old handicap ADD/ dislexia/ can I g

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Discus: What Are My Chances?: September 2003 Archive: Record producer 38 years old handicap ADD/ dislexia/ can I g
By Trkboy2003 (Trkboy2003) on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 10:00 am: Edit

Hi I am a record producer from hollywood ca I have had some success/ major releases worldwide
I am 38 and I have had an extreme case of ADD, a small case of dislexia but I have managed to overcome the handicap about 90% with out the use of drugs and now I want to go back to college, I am more focused than I ever have been.... and here is my history....

I dropped out of SDSU when I was 23, I only had 2 more years to go and my gpa was 1.5 with 75 units earned and my major was music

at that time I took everything for granted, I came from a rich family my dad was a doctor, and I realized the meaning of the struggle (living in poverty) until 15 years later (I had been averaging $1200 a month in income for 14 of the 15 years, and my jobs before I made it as a record producer had been bartender, limo driver, shuttle driver, car salesman, stock broker)
in the present as we all know the music industry has died and my career is finished....(I lost my publishing deal last year so that income is gone...)
the days of charging 10k/ 25k/ 50k/ 100k a song are gone, record sales are way down (my record that is out should be selling 3-4 million but is only doing 300,000 at this time, and everyone now is doing projects on spec... record labels are not paying upfront anymore (if downloading of music did not exist things would be different...

I don't have any other skills except that as an music engineer and I am afraid that will soon dry up as I know that I need to go back to school and get an mom has offered to loan me money (against my royalities that will be coming in in about 2 years) to buy a recording studio as a last resort but I wonder if getting a degree would be a better alternative (I would like to go to harvard, princeton, stanford, yale ect and get a degree in business/ marketing and not have to struggle anymore....

so here are the questions

what process would I have to go through?? would I have to start all over again?? commmit another 4 years?? , are there accelerated courses that I can take to graduate sooner or move up a grade or 2??
If I score high on the SAT's
ACT tests...does that increase my chances on admission? can I get credit for life experience??? some life success??
do I qualify for grants because of the ADD/ dislexia handicap??
for the last 37 years..
I feel that ADD/ dislexia has blinded me through out my entire life!!
and should I commit the recording studio loan to pay for college??
or should I try to get grants/ loans without my mom's help..
although I come from a rich family, I have been literally cut off since I was 23 and
at the rate that I am going now I could end up homeless so I need to make a change in my life now!!! thank you for your time


By Rashmi (Rashmi) on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 11:19 am: Edit


By Carolyn (Carolyn) on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 11:36 am: Edit

You have a lot to think about. The first thing you need to do is try to pinpoint exactly what you want to gain from going back to college - what skills do you want to develop or what knowledge will help you the most in your future. It is not a bad plan to consider going back to school to build your business skills but you should have a plan for where you want those skills to take you beyond making a lot of money. What is it you really want to do in the next phase of your life?

Second, it's probably not realistic to dream of going to an Ivy league school like Harvard at this point in your life, given your past academic background and current financial situation. You can get good business skills at a local school where you won't have to uproot your entire life and take out student loans, etc. I'd suggest you look at Cal State schools first because you will have the greatest chance of being able to afford them.

Most schools will only accept transfer credits for courses where you earned a C or higher so look back at your SDSU transcript to get an idea of what will be transferrable. There may also be time limitations at some schools in terms of how long ago the classes were taken. Again, I suspect your best chance of transferring credit will be at another cal state school.

As for financial considerations - why not start slow by taking one or two classes in the evening at your local cal state or even a community college? This will be fairly reasonable cost-wise and will give you a chance to see if you really are ready to go back to school again. Take a marketing class or a business management class that will help you in your current business. The cost of taking a community college class for credit is very very reasonable in Calif and you should be able to do it on your own. Cal state classes are also fairly reasonable. The community college classes - if they are for credit - will be easily transferred to any cal state or uc school and also to most private schools as well (assuming you get a C or higher).

After a semester of taking one or two evening courses, you'll have a better feel for whether you want to return to college full time or whether it would be better to work towards a degree on a part time basis. You may also have a better idea of where your life is headed and what you want to get out of going to school. That may make it easier to decide if you should put the money your Mom is offering towards full time school.

Finally, many state schools in Calif - including community colleges - now have support programs for students who are learning disabled. I'd suggest you find out what's available as soon as you enroll in a course and take full advantage of any resources for LD students as well as any programs geared towards students returning to school.

Good luck!

By Trkboy2003 (Trkboy2003) on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 11:40 am: Edit

thank you for your main objective is to major in business/ finance/ marketing and come out making 300k a year + and I know that if I go to a lesser school there is no way that will happen...lets assume I can get together 100k to go back to school, and I get high scores on the I have a shot?? how many years am I looking at??
also are there advisors that I can hire help me get back and admitted to one of these colleges..
thank you for your response.....

By Soozievt (Soozievt) on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 11:57 am: Edit

Carolyn's advice to you is right on. Very very helpful and is exactly what would be a right way to approach this. You could continue to work and earn money and take courses at the same time. I do not think it likely you would get into an Ivy school at this point in time, nor is it necessary to do that to achieve your goals. There is always grad school in business after you have had a successful undergraduate experience. I cannot top what Carolyn told you as it is excellent advice. I will just add that there are some colleges that have adult degree programs for people just like you. The students are older and have gained life experience but for whatever reason, do not have a college degree. The courses are geared toward their learning needs and scheduled in ways to allow them to continue working or supporting families. I have taught in two adult degree college programs. Some are low residency and students like yourself come to campus periodically or on one weekend a month but do a lot of work independently for college credit under the supervision of college faculty. I do not know the names of such programs where you are. I taught in this sort of program that would be excellent for you at Vermont College and also at Goddard College. So, I suggest taking Carolyn's advice with starting with a few courses in CC and transferring up to a state university or look into college degree programs for adult learners like yourself. Good luck.

By Trkboy2003 (Trkboy2003) on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 01:15 pm: Edit

thanks; so you are saying that I should go to lets say UCLA/ USC/ UC Davis/ apply for loans/ grants graduate and then I can use the 100k+ go to a graduate school at an ivy league university??
what time frame do you think that I would be looking at? to graduate "as an undergrad" I have at least 70 units from 1984-1987 that are 2.0 and above...and considering the fact that I plan to be only be going to school and not working, as I would need to be extremely focused for this goal to work, also I would like to take accelerated courses and try to graduate asap (1-2 years?) ...and then business school which is about 2 years right?? also is it realistic to be making a salary of 300k+ a year with a business/ marketing/ finance degree after graduation?? if not what is the more realistic figure??
75k/ 100k/ 150k/ 200k 50k?


By Trkboy2003 (Trkboy2003) on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 02:36 pm: Edit

I just talked to my brother (he lives in houston texas) and he said that if I can get into a college out there and get top grades, I can stay with him as long as it takes...
any ideas?? any good schools out there??

By Alimshk (Alimshk) on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 03:59 pm: Edit

You'd be dreaming if you want to make 300K+ after college at your age. Something more realistic would be 45-80k.

By Carolyn (Carolyn) on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 05:59 pm: Edit

Trkboy - Even Harvard MBA's don't start off making $300,000 a year - Especially these days! Go to your local library and read a few back issues of Business Week. Within the past few months, they've run several articles talking about how MBA grads from the top B-schools (Harvard, Penn, Dartmouth, etc.)have had to settle for lower salaries in the past year --- if they can find jobs at all. I think the highest average for starting salaries were around $85,000 and that's with an MBA. I think that you realistically shouldn't plan on making more than $40,000-50,000, if that, right after you get an undergraduate degree in business, especially if you go to school full time (you'll have a 3 or 4 year gap in your work history). For one thing, you will be starting at the bottom with no experience unless you re-enter your current field in a different type of position. And getting that amount as a starting salary will mean more than just doing well in school - it will also mean really focusing on making connections, doing unpaid internships, etc. while you're going to school. There is no easy route to a $300,000 job any more. Like every one else, you will have to work your way up to that salary. : )

Texas does have some excellent schools but the cheapest ones will still be state schools. At your age, I would avoid a private school unless I had a secure job that I was sure would pay my tuition. Otherwise, you will probably end up with some hefty loans before you finish school. Unfortunately, in Texas you won't qualify for in-state tuition fees right away. You will need to establish residency first so you'll end up paying more than going to a public here in Calif. at until you are counted as a resident. Even living with your brother, I'd suggest you make sure that you will be able to find some sort of job there while you go to school. And, since your degree from a Texas school will probably be most marketable in Texas, you might want to see if you can get some information about starting salaries in the Houston and Dallas areas (do a search on the web for local papers - usually they post their classifieds or ask your brother to send you the Sunday classifieds)

That all said, check out the University of Houston's business programs which are supposedly quite good. Look particularly to see if they offer any night or weekend programs geared towards adults and what type of career counseling and job placement services they offer. The admissions page should also tell you something about whether they'll accept any of your credits from SDSU.

However, I still feel that your best bet would be to call your local community college or cal state school now, find out if you can still sign up for any courses (some schools still haven't started) and take at least one business course at night to see if it's something you really want to rip up your entire life to do full-time. And, again, set a clear goal for yourself - you need to know more than you want to make X dollars in finance/marketing/business. That's not specific enough.

I just thought of something else - many community colleges in Calif. offer career counseling services to the general community for little or no cost. Usually this involves testing and meeting with a counselor to help set goals. It might be something worth looking into at your local community college.

You have a great opportunity to reinvent your life - just make sure you'll be happy when you get there.

By Trkboy2003 (Trkboy2003) on Tuesday, September 16, 2003 - 11:08 pm: Edit

Well I have a friend who just got an analyst job at goldman sachs starting at 150k plus perks (car, townhouse, expense account) and he just got his harvard degree/ no MBA.. I know what the magazines/ newspapers say but I do have friends with recent degrees (5 years) who drive jags/ mercedes/ live in 2MM+ dollar mansions spend 2-3k every weekend for relaxation and specialize in certain fields of the business/ finance/ marketing and they all told me that they started out at 75-150k plus benefits (car, house, expense account, stock options)and further more I recently met a famous ball player who got a marketing degree after his ball playing days were over and he got a marketing job with nissan starting at 150k and in about 5 years he was up to 500k a year!!! plus perks I think that the perks causes ones salary to double or triple in value...but if what you say is true nowadays and all I am going to make a year is 30-50k (is that after or before taxes?) do you think that in a few years my salary will go way up?? also where does one start after graduation?? would it be in the mail room?, and is it getting to the point where having a college degree is not so important anymore?? also what about investment bankers, am I to believe that they start out at 50k a year?? I am not doubting what you are saying, but when I meet those who are doing the above I start to wonder....are they full of it?? as far as what they claim to make, are they living beyond their means, and will I ever be able to attain the same success that they have with a degree from a lower accredited college?? even if I graduate from the top of my class..

By Highschoolda (Highschoolda) on Wednesday, September 17, 2003 - 01:26 am: Edit

I just hope you realize how hard college can be especially for your age. The education has changed vastly since you dropped out. The new computer generation has revolutionized everything.

First thing to do: Figure out if you can handel it. I can not stress how important it is.

Don't waste your money or tine bro. Education is expensive and hard.

If you have money and some knowledge, open up a little business. Thats the better way to go for u IMMHO

By Trkboy2003 (Trkboy2003) on Wednesday, September 17, 2003 - 10:24 am: Edit

I do appreciate that comment but maybe I could be a special case.....

I have just started to make websites, flash, html, swish/ I have produced/ written/ engineered on records that have sold millions worldwide in the styles of/ hip hop, r&b, pop, techno/I can take apart and put back computers PC, Mac/ I have operated protools HD, Mix +, performer, nuendo, cubase, fruity loops../I have run SSL, Neve's mixing boards.. 24, 48 Tape machines/I can operate most film/ video cameras (I had a brief stint as a camera man-director) and I was also a stock broker (I still have my series 7) also when I was in college I did manage to get my math requirement out of the way (which I would think would be the hardest subject to complete) so with all of that said do you think that I can hack it not to mention my typical work day is 12-16 I am used to the long hours..

I have also made a commitment to myself that if I do go back, the following will be off.... of my list of activities

Parties (I've had tons of them, and I have attended most of the big Hollywood ones including the Playboy mansion)

and girls...

I just broke up with my girlfriend because she is 19 and has no comprehension to the commitment that I have to make to succeed in this venture.... she constantly needs attention and I could not possibly give it to her to her if I do this..and to her life is a party...(she is a model and rock stars/ actors/ are always hitting on her and inviting us to parties)...but alas she is young and what she doesnt realize is that, to me, financial security is the most important thing...and yeah I have made some good money here and there but it is not steady.....and I need a steady life...9-5

not 6am to 12 am/ 8pm to 8am/ 12pm to 2am which are the hours that I seem to be doing...

I have been in denial of this for years until now, but guys like me are a dime a dozen, everyone has a studio...everyone does beats...everyone has their names on records...and it is not so financially or mentally rewarding anymore....but very few of us have an education...

Now if I keep my major in music and minor in business and it seems that some of the music courses that I would be taking have used the techniques of some of my mentors whom I have worked for or associated with...Rodney Jerkins/ Snoop/ LL Cool J/ Richard Perry/ DJ Lethal "Limp Bizkit" JC "NSYNC"
so with all of that in you think that I
could have a remote possibility of getting a college degree with honors?? or is college so hard that I should just forget it?? open up a studio and make 50k- 75k a year/ no perks and after taxes I would be left with 30-50k which to me is living in poverty....and I would think that unless you can make 100k a year (including perks) it would be very difficult to live in luxury...not to mention raising a family..
also SDSU has told me that I can go back, but are they a top rated school??

By Carolyn (Carolyn) on Wednesday, September 17, 2003 - 12:17 pm: Edit

SDSU is an excellent school for business and has a very good reputation in Southern Calif. I know. I received my MBA from SDSU.

Again, I really think your best bet is to take the first step and try a course somewhere local. It will not cost you very much and if you can not concentrate on one evening course while working full time then you will definitely have trouble concentrating on 5 or more courses as a full time student - especially if you will only be satisfied with a "top rated school". And, since SDSU is not accepting NEW students for their spring semester due to the Calif. budget crisis, you can't start there until next fall anyhow.

To be honest, right now it appears to me that you are just flailing about for a quick fix to your financial and social problems. Returning to school is NOT a quick fix. It is a terrific goal and very do-able but it is not going to be a guarantee of anything right away.

By Trkboy2003 (Trkboy2003) on Wednesday, September 17, 2003 - 01:57 pm: Edit

I just had a talk with someone on the board at an Ivy league school (friend of a client) and off the record they suggested that since I only have 6 units from SDSU which had brought my GPA from a 3.0 to a 1.69 I should not even mention that school (SDSU) then my transferable units would be at 48, (I found out that the number units that I have really earned is 54 total) and if I only mention the other community colleges that I had attended I could show that I have a GPA of 3.0 in good that possible??? also I am not looking for a way out out of my financial/ social life as I am only looking to the future...and as of next week I have a choice to start a engineering job at ABC for $2000 a week or I wonder should I go to to community college and start taking courses?? decisions..decisions..
and much thanks to everyone for your advice you have been so helpful.....

By Nyu2010 (Nyu2010) on Wednesday, September 17, 2003 - 04:06 pm: Edit

This wouldn't be Trick Daddy would it...

trkboy= trick daddy

By Trkboy2003 (Trkboy2003) on Wednesday, September 17, 2003 - 04:44 pm: Edit

naw homie!!! Trick Daddy is an artist
I am a beat guy!!/ record producer....
but I have worked with him before...

By Nyu2010 (Nyu2010) on Sunday, September 21, 2003 - 06:37 pm: Edit

Whoa really?? Did you work on "Take It To The House?"

I want to be a music video director, have you ever done anything like that before?

By Alimshk (Alimshk) on Sunday, September 21, 2003 - 07:17 pm: Edit

Talk to Dave Meyers.

By Nyu2010 (Nyu2010) on Tuesday, September 23, 2003 - 09:31 pm: Edit

Yeah we're best friends. Me, Gideon Yago and him hang out alllll day.

No but really he makes good videos. So does Spike Jonze.

By Nyu2010 (Nyu2010) on Tuesday, September 23, 2003 - 09:34 pm: Edit

Spike Jonze did Bjorks "Oh So Quiet" video as well as Fatboy Slim's "Weapon of Choice" and some other good ones.

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