BELTON, Texas—The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor recently received a generous $40,000 grant from the E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation to continue program support for the UMHB Conservatory of Music. Past grants from the Carpenter Foundation have made it possible for many students to participate in the program through scholarships and strategic funding initiatives.
“This grant allows us to provide music to children and youth in the Central Texas community who might otherwise never have these enriching experiences,” explained Dr. Jonathan Gary, director of UMHB’s Conservatory of Music and department of music chairperson. “We are grateful to the Carpenter Foundation for its long-standing support of our public service programs.”
UMHB provides preschool, elementary and secondary students of Central Texas with the opportunity to learn and grow from music through its Conservatory of Music. The success of these programs has led to the expansion of several programs this year, including opportunities for additional students. Thanks to this year’s funding, UMHB has begun a faith-based early childhood music program called “Teeny Tykes and Tunes” and will offer a middle school show choir this spring. Additionally, UMHB’s Conservatory of Music will continue to prepare middle and high school students to audition for various Texas Music Educators Association (TMEA) and Texas Choral Directors Association (TCDA) choirs, which would not be possible without the Carpenter Foundation grant.
“TMEA and TCDA provide opportunities for students to excel in choral music in the form of honor choirs, both at a regional level and a state level. This opportunity provides students with a chance to experience challenging repertoire to work on their musicianship skills,” said Deborah Barrick, TMEA and TCDA audition coach. “When learning the music with me, the students learn how to become more musical and accurate with their singing. It builds confidence and work ethic in all of my students. I feel the experience students get while learning music for these auditioned choirs teaches them skills they will use in all aspects of life as they mature.”
The Conservatory of Music program offers high-quality instruction for its students from the UMHB Department of Music faculty. From scholarships for musical instruction to free music lessons for children in local daycare centers, these programs are making music education available to children of all ages in Central Texas and providing opportunities that otherwise would not be available.
About UMHB Conservatory of Music
Founded in 1996, the Conservatory of Music provides a full spectrum of music studies for Central Texas students. The program offers area children opportunities to improve their music skills through individual instruction in piano, voice, brass, woodwinds, percussion and guitar. The conservatory curriculum also offers summer activities for young musicians, an All State Choir Camp for high school students, “Teeny Tykes and Tunes” summer camps, and in partnership with the UMHB Art Department we offer Art workshops for ages seven to twelve and a high school Art Camp.