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Financial: Choral Scholarships

Date: Fri, 22 Nov 1996 09:20:50 -0700 (MST)
From: Steve Parker
Subject: Scholarship information compiled

I'm finally getting around to sharing the scholarship info I compiled a
few weeks ago. I deleted most of the names of universities at the request
of the sender. Hope you find this useful.


Subj: Re: Scholarship monies in higher ed.

I am not sure that our case is entirely comparable to what you are
looking at, but perhaps it will help.

We award scholarships to students who plan to be music majors. As we
have an ensemble requirement, this is in part a choral
scholarship. Our minimum award is $1,000; our highest (for one highly
academically-qualified as well as musically talented student) is $7,500.
These are annual awards, so long as the student remains a music major.
Virtually all of this money is in endowments of various kinds, many
specifically devoted to music.

That will probably be the ultimate solution: you will need to find
several people (perhaps well-heeled choir alumni) who will endow the
necessary funds. Alternatively, you could do the $100-$500 per plate
dinner followed by a concert (maybe include the concert ticket with the
dinner, but also allow people to come to the concert alone for, say, $25)
and use the proceeds as seed money for your scholarships. In my
experience, people tend to price these things too low for fear they won't
work: look at the fanciest thing that has happened in your area and make
yours comparable. Maybe get a few of the folks who have organized big
fund raisers (political, service organization, etc.) to serve on an
honorary board. Their main function will be to provide logistical
insight along with an entree' to the right people to invite.

Just a few thoughts. Hope it helps.

Subj: Re: Scholarship monies in higher ed.

While I do not direct a University ensemble, I do direct and coordinate
the music ministries at a large church, enrolling over 300 in the music
ministry. I have had close associations with area colleges and have
been able to help those with limited monies for scholarships by
providing scholarships through the church. We would help pay for
tuition or books (a set amount every semester) and in exchange the
student would sing in the choir and be a part of the music ministry. This
enabled the college to offer something in addition to their scholarship
money. I would review the audition tapes and make selections as to
who I wanted to offer the money to. This may not answer your
question, but I thought it might give you a few ideas.
Subj: Re: Scholarship monies in higher ed.

I am from Oklahoma Baptist University, Shawnee, OK

School size: 2000 students

Music majors: 150

Vocal majors: 75-80

We award music scholarships to voices majors in the amounts of $400, $600,
$800 and $1000 a year. (Tuition is around $5200/year) Satisfactory
progress has to be made each semester for students to keep their scholarship.
There is also one $1200 scholarship awarded to the most outstanding
freshman each year.

There are no scholarships for singing in the choirs.

I hope his can be of help.

Nancy Cobb, Professor of Music
Subj: Re: Scholarship monies in higher ed.

> 1. How much do you have available to recruit vocal/choral students?

A big fat zero.

> 2. Does your institution/state give tuition waivers? If so, how many?

Well, we have something called TAP, Talent Assistance Program, or
some such thing. Very little tuition assistance, but our tuition is only
about $3,000. We rank ALL performers who apply under this. Actually,, I
think it is NOT a tuition program, but an ACCEPTANCE program. For
talented students with low grades who might get in becuase of talent. So
maybe it stands for Talent Acceptance Program. At any rate, it makes
almost no difference to our music program at all.

We do have two $100 annual awards, one for the most talented/best
achieving minority, one for the best student in first-year theory, to
entice them to continue (they only get the money if they continue).
That's our annual total.
We are also 4-yr liberal arts program in a major university. Everyone
else has a grad prog, but not us. Major money for football compared to
the arts, but not compared to Ohio State!


David Griggs-Janower
Albany Pro Musica
228 Placid Drive
Schenectady, NY 12303-5118

Subj: Re: Scholarship monies in higher ed.

Hi Steve: This is one of our major weaknesses--scholarship money!!!! I
have had, in the past, only $1500 for incoming freshmen averaging about
$150-200 per student. These are one-time scholarships. We have a few
endowed scholarships for Music. Ed., Peformance; Outstanding Choral, etc.,
but we don't have a heck of alot for recruiting purposes. Last year was
started and "Alumnni" phonathon which brought us $2000, which was matched
by a local insurance co. This brought us a total of $4000 for the
entire dept. This year looks even more promising and I think we'll get
this off the ground. Let's face it, the dollar is the bottom line, right?
Sure the quality of the program is very important but the "bucks" are more
attractive in most cases.

Subj: Re: Scholarship monies in higher ed.

I can give out about 28 choral
scholarships per year, of $250.00 each. In addition, I have 4 section
leaders in our most select choir who receive $500.00 per year, and five
accompanists who receive $400.00 per year.

These are funds provided by the University from their revenues.

I consider these amounts to be FAR too small, but the only way they will
be increased is if I find the funds myself (which I am beginning to do,
by the way).
Subj: Re: Scholarship monies in higher ed.

Our choral/vocal scholarship are awarded by the Dean/Voice Faculty
and I am unaware of the total amount available. See #3 & #4 below...

> 2. Does your institution/state give tuition waivers? If so, how many?


> 3. What are the typical scholarship amounts that you award--$300, $500, ?

Our scholarships range from 25% to 40% of the total cost of education
(Tuition,Room, Board). Since we are a private school our costs are
more than likely much higher than yours.

> 4. How many awards do you typically hand out each year?

I would guess that we have approximately 80 voice prinicpals right
now on scholarship. I apologize for not having a more accurate
Subj: Scholarships

In general, almost none.

Specifically answering your questions:

>1. How much do you have available to recruit vocal/choral students?

About $2,000.00 some of which is "shared" (see below)

>2. Does your institution/state give tuition waivers? If so, how many?

Our Alumni Assoc. has a Music Divison, and they have provided for a
complete tutition for one _out-state_ student per year for _all_ of music.
Since this organization is largely Band Alums, the recipent is almost
always a band student. In all fairness, however, our band dir. and I try to
select _our_ candidate to be a student who will perform in band/orch,
band/choir or orch/choir. Unfortunately, the final chose belongs to a
committee of those alums, a most unworkable situation!

>3. What are the typical scholarship amounts that you award--$300, $500, ?

$500.00 and $250.00

>4. How many awards do you typically hand out each year?

I have about $1,000.00 with which to work.

Hope this helps.

Subj: Re: Scholarship monies in higher ed.

Dear Steve, A quick response to your inquiry about Music Scholarships. I
teach at a provate University NOT State and we have a kind of tuition
forgiveness in the music area that is not need based. It has increased
greatly over the years and we now have over $100,000 each year in Music
awards. This is for singers and instrumentalists and is contingent on their
being in a major performing organization. If they are in more than one
performing group they may receive more award. I direct the choirs and the
basic award is $800.00 per year. Some, who are in, for example, Chamber
Singers and Madrigals or Vocal Jazz in addition to the University Chorus may
receive $1400.00 to 3500.00 per year depending on experience and position in
the groups ie. section leader, officer, etc.. This is money that lessens the
need for a student to hold one or two after class jobs which would preclude
their participation in the groups. Fortunately, our administration is really
enlightened about the importance of the Arts and our President even uses the
groups to sing a 10 minute group at selected dinners he uses for fundraising.
It really works!! After we sing (usually after the entre) he says you have
now seen the students in action and they are impressed and in many cases
give. Good luck, Alexander Dashnaw PS. Let me know what you glean from
others, Thanks
Subj: Re: Scholarship monies in higher ed.

Our department is also short on scholarship funds. Our max. award is
$500, which covers less than half of the student's academic fees. WE've
given only a few of these; most scholarships are nominal, in the range of

Use this as you can; good luck.

Subj: Re: Scholarship monies in higher ed. (fwd)


At Bethel College (St. Paul) we have 6 $1000 scholarships to go to all incoming
freshmen musicians. Typically at least 2, perhaps 3 would go to choral/vocal
people. Those are renewable for 4 years provided certain criteria are met.

A unique and farther-reaching scholarship is the following: all freshmen and
sophomores who are in a performance organization may receive "free" half-hour
lessons on the instrument of their choice. In actual dollars that amounts to
c.$1000 over the two years. Obviously it is "in the pocket" money for music
majors/minors who would have to pay for those lessons. For non-majors it is an
incentive to gain valuable skills for those who would not opt for lessons
otherwise, and "real" money for many who would pay for those lessons. The
practice also pays back to the organization in a higher skill level.

Until this year Frosh and Sophs were required to take those lessons. Because of
numerical growth which made the number of free lessons suddenly much larger, and
the drawback of requiring some unmotivated students to take a lessons deadly for
the instructor), we have gone the volunteer route. We are happy with the

Incidentally, though like most of us I often have had a problem with the
disproportionate athletic obsession -- Bethel is in a conference which has no
scholarships! Athletics does "get around that" in some ways -- but technically
we actually have more scholarship money than the athletic department. How's that
for a switch!


Subj: Vocal awards...

Dear Steve:

Your inquiry is right on the money for most of us trying to recruit to a
college/university. In our case, it will be mostly for non-music majors
who can sing!

Just attended a threeday seminar in Chicago (sponsored by DePaul
University) on Music Recruitment! It was wonderful. Opened my eyes to
many things.

For the record (and anonymously as you offer) we have only $5000 to spend.
A pittance compared to sports. I can make it $500 to ten students, or
$5000 to one student. At least I have that flexibility. All monies are in
the form of "funny" money, i.e., tuition waivers.


Stephen Parker
Director of Choral Activities
Black Hills State University
Spearfish, SD 57799-9098

on April 27, 2005 10:00pm
I think we would agree that not all talented high school singers desire to major in music if they go on to college. Many of them, of course, do want to continue singing in a choir.

I teach choral music at Hawai'i Pacific University. We offer 50% tuition waivers for students with a PASSION for singing who want to major in one of HPU's 40 undergraduate or 9 graduate degree programs (none of which are music).

Since HPU does not have degree programs in music, all of the members of the choir are pursuing degrees in other academic disciplines. I think we are one of the few choral groups made up of non-music majors who receive a scholarship for their participation.

Please let me know if you are interested in our scholarship program for choral singers.

Susan McCreary Duprey
Hawai'i Pacific University