In the community: music
One way faculty and students are involved in the community is by contributing to the annual STEM Day at local middle schools. While this usually involves projects related to science, technology, engineering and math, this year NNU music students added performance, music technology and music management activities—turning STEM into STEAM.
“We’re ready to bring the ‘A’s back into the lives of students,” said Dr. Casey Christopher, NNU professor of music. “The students of NNU’s music industry program want to teach people that a career in the arts includes more than a narrow path to performing on the stage. Careers in music technology, concert production, and artist management give us many ways to bring the joy and deep expression of art and music into a world often dominated by math and science.”
“being involved in the community is debatably one of the most critical parts of our education...”Using their skills and passion, NNU music industry students led five 40-minute presentations for 250 middle school students at Vallivue Middle School this semester. From recording songs to helping finish a composition, and from adding effects to recordings to differentiating music from various eras, the middle schoolers were introduced to music industry through interactive activities in technology, performance, songwriting and music business.
“STEAM Day is super valuable because it connects middle schoolers to their interests and to people who can talk to them more about those interests,” commented junior Megan Christopher. “Overall, the event went very well. The music industry majors were able to build their skill set by preparing and executing this presentation, and the middle schoolers were able to get an exciting snapshot of what we in the NNU Music Industry Program are passionate about doing.”
Dr. Christopher also used this service opportunity to develop his students’ skills; the NNU students designed and managed the content, setup and delivery of the entire arts engagement presentations, including the equipment brought for hands-on learning and demonstrations.
He explained, “These students will engage the public as they move into careers, which may focus on marketing music artists and promoting concert tours. When they engage the community with events like STEAM Day while in school, they are sharpening their public relations skills in ways that will serve them for their future.”
“Building a network and making connections is super important to anyone working in this industry, and if we get to serve people around us at the same time, it's a double win!” added Megan. “In this way, being involved in the community is debatably one of the most critical parts of our education because, like the middle schoolers, we get to meet people who share our passion.”