Oklahoma City Thunder guard Chris Paul’s CP Family Foundation is dedicated to leveling the playing for students of color in the sports and entertainment industries.
In a just-announced partnership, Paul, Live Nation Urban and the foundation will begin a summer internship program at North Carolina A&T’s College of Business and Economics (COBE) tied to a business of sports and entertainment class.
“Access through education helps level the playing field and true leadership comes from knowledge,” said Paul. “I’m looking forward to expanding the partnership with A&T and Live Nation Urban and seeing the future results of our efforts.”
According to the foundation, the internship has been in discussion since December.
“The conversation started back in December with Live Nation Urban to bring resources to the table to enhance the class in some way,” said Carmen Wilson, project manager at the CP Family Foundation.
The internship will expose students to aspects of the live music industry that they may not get otherwise. They will be learning marketing, sales, promotion, staging, booking and logistics.
They are to work on the fulfillment of building out live concerts and events throughout the summer with Live Nation either in Washington, Los Angeles and North Carolina.
“We are excited to partner with Chris Paul and North Carolina A&T to offer this great opportunity to their students,” said Gee, president of Live Nation Urban. “One of my goals for Live Nation Urban has always been to introduce young African American future executives to the live music industry. We are disproportionately underrepresented in this space, and it will take programs like these and partners like Chris and N.C. A&T to help change that narrative.”
Students in this spring semester class find it to be a great experience.
Cameron Dinkins, a senior multimedia student, told the Undefeated that it is exciting because it gives her a holistic view of the sports and entertainment businesses.
“I believe the work I’ve done in this class will help me as I start my journey through these industries,” she said.
Tre Ingram, a senior multimedia student and student activities board president, is glad to see the foundation bringing attention to a body of students who he believes are typically overlooked.
“There’s such a pool of talent at our university, especially in regard to creatives who want to work in entertainment and music,” Ingram said. “I think oftentimes our institutions are overlooked and not priority when it comes to pipeline programs. I’m really excited to see where this goes. To me, it’s also a win because it’s nice to see students be given an opportunity in varying majors that we don’t normally see.”
N.C. A&T is known to be a STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) school, mainly because of its accomplishments, alumni and research.
The foundation hopes this internship creates a pipeline that will turn into jobs for students, not just the students at A&T but other HBCU as well.