Carnegie Mellon University Pandora Challenge with Jon Batiste & Sing for Hope

September 17th, 2018 | In partnership with Jon Batiste and Sing for Hope, presented with Carnegie Mellon University #PandoraChallenge 

We’re very excited to host the Pandora Challenge this year at Carnegie Mellon University. At CMU, we continually look for ways to bring together the best minds from across campus and expose them to real-world challenges and opportunities. The Pandora Challenge is a perfect fit. Our students will have a great chance to collaborate, innovate and launch a new initiative out into the world.
— Lance LaDuke, Assistant Teaching Professor of Euphonium, Director, Modern Musicking Lab, Carnegie Mellon University

On Monday, September 17th, Carnegie Mellon University students came together for a kickoff event in partnership with Jon Batiste and charitable non-profit Sing for Hope for the Pandora Challenge. At this event, students formed teams to use the power of music to create social impact. Teams will create a music marketing and playlist campaign to support the support Sing for Hope in their mission to transform individuals and communities by leveraging the power of the arts to create a better world.

Powering transformation through the arts is at the core of Sing for Hope’s mission. That’s why we are proud to join our dear friend and Sing for Hope board member Jon Batiste to partner with Real Industry and Pandora, tapping the great minds at Carnegie Mellon University to amplify our message for a broad audience.
— Monica Yunus Co-Executive Director and Co-Founder of Sing for Hope, and Faculty at Carnegie Mellon University, and Camille Zamora, Co-Executive Director and Co-Founder of Sing for Hope

The assignment is to create, launch, market, and optimize playlists that drives awareness to Sing for Hope. The playlists will include an introduction from Jon Batiste and student-created voice messages that educate listeners about the non-profit’s mission. The student teams have three weeks to grow their listenership and influence their audience to become activated in the conversation around the power of music in transforming lives and access to music resources for all.

The Real Industry Pandora Challenge events give students a look behind the curtain into real-world artist marketing technologies and scenarios. This is the type of work they can put on resumes during future internship and job searches.
— Heather Ellis, Manager, Artist Marketing at Pandora

The Carnegie Mellon University Pandora Challenge wrapped up on October 7th! Congratulations to the winning student team!

Shane Killen - Vocal Performance - Class of 2022

Kyle Collins - Vocal Performance - Class of 2022

Lucy Altus - Vocal Performance - Class of 2022

Julia Timmons - Vocal Performance - Class of 2022

Olivia Gesualdi - Vocal Performance - Class of 2022

On November 13, 2018, Pandora’s executive team invited the winner team for a half-day mentorship session with:

Tony Calzaretta, VP Listener Product & Design, Bill Crandall, VP Editorial Content, Shamal Ranasinghe, VP Catalog & Creator Product, Lauren Nagel, VP Executive Creative Director, Beckie Wood, VP Content Programming, Catalog & Insights and Heather Ellis, Manager, Artist Marketing.

In addition, Pandora shared the team’s winning playlists across its social media outlets.

For more on the Pandora Challenges, check out Pandora’s article: