Lawrence CMENC chapter wins two awards

Erty Seidel

In February, the Lawrence
University Collegiate Music
Education National Conference
chapter at Lawrence received two
“Chapter of Excellence” awards.
CMENC groups across the nation
contended for the award, which
was given in recognition of exceptional
activities in the last year.
The local CMENC group is
part of a larger consortium of
student organizations under the
umbrella of a national organization.
According to its Web site,
MENC is a group of “more than
75,000 active, retired and pre-service
music teachers.”
Schools in Alaska, Maine,
Nevada and Hawaii also received
“Chapter of Excellence” awards in
other categories.
Lawrence received the awards
for student-spearheaded projects,
including a music education program
for lower-income schools
and a professional development
conference on teaching music to
exceptional learners.
Senior Daniel Parks led the
music education program. After
hearing a local elementary school
teacher talk about a lack of exposure
to classical instruments in
local low-income elementary
schools, Parks and a group of
CMENC students put together a
program to bring music to the
school.
Over midterm reading period
last year, Parks and about 20 other
students volunteered to give a performance
at the school, including
a 45-minute musical program that
included a skit about instruments
and a whole-school sing-along.
Parks says he plans to continue
with these programs during future
reading periods.
“It’s about trying to… build a
bridge between the conservatory
and the Appleton area,” said Parks.
“The whole thing was super-fun.”
The other award was for a professional
development conference
held last year at Lawrence, which
was the brainchild of students
Lindsay Schwartz and Schuyler
Gardner. Schwartz said, “I realized
there wasn’t a lot that Lawrence
does to prepare music education
majors for exceptional learners.”
Schwartz and Gardner, along
with Jaclyn Kottman, worked
together with Lawrence University
CMENC to put together the
Education in Exceptional Learning
Day.
About 75 students from
Wisconsin universities as well as
teachers, administrators, parents
and students with learning disabilities
attended the conference.
“It was very intense,” said
Schwartz.
The workshop ran the entire
day and covered topics all across
the exceptional learning spectrum,
including a talk by a music teacher
who has been very successful with
exceptional students.
Notes from the attendees
called the conference “professional,”
“well-organized” and “positive.”
As for the awards, both Parks
and Schwartz said they were very
proud. “It’s nice to be recognized
for something we really care
about,” said Parks.
The Lawrence University
CMENC chapter holds meetings
every other Tuesday from 8:30 to
9:30 p.m. For more information,
visit http://sites.google.com/site/
lucmenc.

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