Logo: The Urban Influencer

Detroit Institute Of Music Education (DIME) To Close

Image: Detroit Institute Of Music Education (DIME) To Close

Share This On:

DIME (Detroit Institute of Music Education) has announced that after six incredible years of affordable music education for countless youths in Detroit and Denver, the institute will have to close their doors.  

A statement from founders Sarah Clayman and Kevin Nixon reads:

On March 16th 2020, as the COVID 19 lockdown began, and without prior notice to DIME Directors or senior management, Metropolitan State University of Denver unilaterally announced by email to all DIME students and faculty that they were ending the MSU Denver at DIME partnership agreement. Consequently, DIME has been forced to close its physical music education colleges DIME Detroit and DIME Denver.  

On that same day, all DIME students also received a second notice from MSU Denver claiming that their music department could teach-out the current students at both campus's without DIME and DIME's Music and Music Business curriculum, despite their own curriculum being that of a standard classical music department. MSU Denver voluntarily breached the partnership agreement by not adhering to the 360 day notice period of termination, that would allow DIME to find another partner or partners, and would enable DIME to continue to recruit and educate students for Fall 2020 and Spring 2021. 

To protect the current students studying in the Commercial Songwriting, Commercial Music Performance and Music Industry Studies Bachelor of Arts in Music programs, DIME Directors and their team of litigators and investors have spent the past 9 weeks trying to negotiate with MSU Denver. 

It is with great sadness that we received confirmation on June 1, 2020, of MSU Denver's decision to reject DIME's proposal to teach-out the remaining students together, that confirmed their unwillingness to adhere to the Partnership Agreement. No reason was given.  DIME's students have been left with uncertainty in both cities on how they will continue with their modern music degrees. Modern music and music business degrees that these students have chosen based on DIME's innovative approach to music education, an education that has allowed DIME to be recognized twice as one of Billboard's Top 20 Music Schools in America (2019 and 2020).   

The original partnership deal was signed in 2015 by DIME Founders Kevin Nixon and Sarah Clayman, and former MSU Denver President Steve Jordan and former Vice-President Steve Kreidler, who spent time at DIME Detroit, and saw for themselves, the students talent and desire to learn, as well as the high-quality of teaching from the faculty.  2017 saw a leadership change at MSU Denver, the in-coming President Janine Davidson appeared to be a supporter of the partnership, but twice planned visits to DIME Detroit in 2019, and yet both of those visits were subsequently cancelled. A partnership ending without our 'partner' having seen first-hand the incredible work and excitement coming from our students. 

DIME Online and Original 1265 Recordings are unaffected by any of the above


On a personal level, DIME President Kevin Nixon, and DIME Managing Director Sarah Clayman add: 

DIME would like to be clear that the timing of this statement's release has been intentionally held back to June 3rd in order to show maximum respect to the current fight for equality and Tuesday's Blackout. 

For 5 years all of our financial resources were reinvested into building DIME's standards to a level that has seen us in the Billboard Top 20 Music Schools in America for two years running.  That was achieved by the quality of the program and curriculum and the opportunities this program has given musicians, songwriters and entrepreneurs in Detroit and Denver.  When our friends at Universal Music Group have an artist who is prepared to give a masterclass to music students, DIME is in their top list. That is a compliment to the faculty and students at both DIME Detroit and DIME Denver. 

We have not given up hope that we can reinvent DIME in Detroit, and work with other local organizations to continue music education in the city we have lived in for the past 6 years and have grown to love. We believe that everyone should have the opportunity and access to an education in music that will allow them successful long-term careers in a profession they love.


DIME is a group of music institutes dedicated to teaching the next generation of modern musicians and entrepreneurs. Founded by music industry veterans Kevin Nixon and Sarah Clayman, DIME offers advanced music students a unique study experience in contemporary music, with expert musicians and music industry professionals teaching programs in guitar, bass, vocals, drums, songwriting and music industry studies. Nixon and Clayman launched DIME DETROIT in 2014, joining the effort to revitalize and reinvigorate Detroit's music landscape. DIME was designated a 2019 & 2020 top 20 Billboard Music School.