Category: Music Advocacy

As most of you are aware the Chase Community Giving Facebook contest is well underway. Actually, the voting ends tomorrow!!! MENC is competing to win $500,000 to help music education everywhere. MENC is currently in 40th place with only 2,225 votes!! They need YOUR vote to move into a winning spot!  In round 2 of the contest there are multiple donations that Chase is giving to the top 25 charities:

  • 1st place – $500,000
  • 2nd place – $400,000
  • 3rd place – $300,000
  • 4th and 5th –  $200,000 each
  • 6th – 10th – $100,000 each
  • 11th – 15th –  $40,000 each
  • 16th – 25th – $20,000 each

With only 2,225 votes MENC trails 25th place by around 1,500 votes! Every single vote at this point is necessary and could really help music education in our country. You don’t have to be a music educator or MENC member to vote. You should vote if:

  • Agree with MENC’s “Big Idea”
  • You love and support music
  • You are concerned for the state of music education in our schools
  • You have benefited  from music education in the public school system

 The only way MENC can move into the top 25 is for you to vote, spread the word through Twitter, Facebook and blogs, and encourage others to do the same!! Please consider taking 30 seconds to vote and support music education in our schools!

Win Your Collegiate MENC Chapter Free Membership!!

MENC just announced today that as part of the campaign that they will be giving free membership to the college whose Collegiate MENC Chapter gets the most number of votes! This campaign is a great way for music undergraduates to get involved and help advocate for music education!! This is a great way to help support MENC, but also help you and your college save some money. All you have to do is vote for MENC and then comment on their page with the name of your College MENC Chapter!! Even if you are not a member of your MENC chapter, but support and benefit what they do go ahead and vote!! As before this only takes a few seconds and is really simple, but can have a HUGE impact on music education and helps to support your collegiate MENC chapter at the same time. Below are the steps of how to vote and help your chapter win free membership!

  1. Click on the following link:
  2. Click on the “here to vote” link on the above page
  3. After you vote leave a comment on the MENC page with the name of your chapter
  4. Spread the word to other MENC collegiate members!!!!

It is that easy and a great way for undergraduates to get involved. Spread the word the members of your Collegiate MENC Chapter!! Please take a few minutes of your time to vote for MENC and spread the word to your friends. There is only 1 day left to vote!! Thank you to all who have already voted and are helping to spread the word!


For those of you that have not heard or are confused MENC is in Round 2 of voting in the Chase Community Giving Campaign!! Thanks to you MENC was one of the top 100 charities in round 1 and won $25,000. Now they moved on to the 2nd round. At the end of the voting the charity with the top number of votes will win $500,000. In order to make this happen, this is where YOU come in.

How You Can Help

In order for MENC to win you must vote. It is extremely easy and takes less than 30 seconds of your time. Whether or not you have voted in the 1st round PLEASE VOTE!!! All you have to do is

  • Click on this link
  • Like Chase Community Giving (if you haven’t already)
  • Vote for MENC
Now, that was simple, but can have a HUGE impact on music education worldwide. If you want more information on the campaign or would like to follow the campaign on Twitter check out the links below.

Why Should I Vote?

In order to move on to the second round of voting each charity had to have a “Big Idea” explaining how they would spend the $500,000. MENC has some wonderful ideas on how they will help music education with the money. Here are MENC’s Big Ideas:
“Creativity, discipline, teamwork – just a few of the life-long benefits of music study. But kids across the country are losing access to music as school programs are cut back or eliminated. The most affected are those who need it most – kids in underserved communities. Your vote can make a difference for millions of kids. MENC will use $150,000 to provide 100 grants of $1000 -$2500 to school music programs in underserved areas to help students achieve success through music. We will use $150,000 to develop resources and to provide training to help teachers build music programs with strong foundations and to help those whose programs are facing budget cuts. We will use $200,000 for a national web/social media campaign to encourage kids to study music and others to support school music programs – featuring stories of teachers and students in programs that have received grants- to show what is at risk and what stands to be gained. Our BIG IDEA: The study and making of music by all!”
MENC’s mission is to advance music education by encouraging the study and making music by all. Wining this campaign would help them to continue to fulfill this mission.

Help Make the Campaign Go Viral!!

Taking the time to vote is the first step, but to help MENC win the campaign we need to make it go VIRAL! This is where the real challenge begins. After you have voted, get at least 10 or 15 of your Facebook friends to vote in the Chase Community Giving Campaign!! 
  • Post about the campaign on yours and your friends walls
  • Message your friends and tell them why to vote for MENC
  • Invite all of your friends and challenge them to invite their friends to the Facebook event Vote for MENC in the Chase Community Giving Project
Also share this video that MENC created about their “Big Idea” with all of your friends.

Do Your Part and Help Music Education

Please don’t wait, get involved in the MENC Chase Giveaway RIGHT NOW!! It only takes one click and a few seconds to help music education! With over 70,000 MENC members getting enough votes to win should not be a problem. Please help spread the word. Right now MENC is in 41st place with less than 900 votes (the first place charity has over 6,00 votes!!!). In order for MENC to have a chance at winning they need YOU to vote and spread the word. Write a blog post, share it on Facebook and Twitter. DO whatever it takes to help make this go viral. Even non music educators can still vote and help music education. We all know the state of music education in our country is grim, so please help spread the word and win one for music education!!
Check out these other blog posts for more information: Joseph Pisano
FutureMusicEducators– Andrew Ritenour
MusicEdMajor– Andy Zweibel and Andrew Ritenour

Every year in April I look forward to attending the PMEA State conference. This is my 5th year attending the conference either as a performer or future educator, and as always it did not disappoint. As usual the PMEA State conference which was held in Hersey PA from April 13th-16th was a success and provided attendees with countless amounts of invaluable information. I had an amazing time, learned a lot of information, and made a few connections with other music educators. Below is a review of some of the highlights from the event. Sorry that this review is coming so late, but with the end of student teaching everything got very hectic.

PMEA Live Blogs-

I was very honored to be a part of a five member team made up of Grove City College junior and senior education majors who live-blogged the conference. We live blogged a majority of the sessions that were offered at the conference and shared our experiences on Twitter. The live-blogs are currently in replay mode, so you can go back and read through our session notes for the sessions that interest you. You can find the live blogs on Overall, we felt the live-blogging was a great success and was a good way to help make the conference more web 2.0. It was a successful way to show how web 2.0 can be integrated into professional development. Again I want to thank Dr. Joseph Pisano and Grove City College for making this event possible!!

Informative Sessions-

As always there was a range of sessions offered at the conference. Everything from jazz, special education, band, orchestra, choir, general music, conducting, etc. was represented. As a future music teacher each year I try to attend as many sessions as  possible that cover a lot of areas so that I so that I receive a wealth of knowledge. My goal for PMEA every year is to be a sponge and soak up as much information as possible. Below are the sessions that I attend this year. Check out my live blog here to read about the sessions.

  • Selecting A Music Theory Textbook: A Guide for High School Teachers
  • Performance Practice in the Music Classroom
  • Beyond the Book: Making Music Visible
  • Jazz Workshop for Music Educators
  • Listening Journals in Middle School General Music
  • Orff Schulwerk: A Winning Way
  • Transfer of Learning: Students Can Perform the Sforzando Every Time
  • Quality Tried and Trued: Choral Repertoire for Singers of All Ages
  • Inclusion! Rethinking Success in the Music Classroom
  • Going Global: Google Earth as a Tool for Teaching World Music


There were also many impressive concerts for the attendees to listen to an learn from. Among them were jazz ensembles, saxophone quartets, wind ensembles etc. Unfortunately due to our rigorous live blogging schedule I was not able to attend many of the concerts, but I did attend the West Chester University Wind Ensemble directed by Andrew Yozviak, which was very impressive. Also Thursday evening of the conference I had the privilege to attend  a performance by “Pershing’s Own” US Army Band and the US Army Chorus. Excellent performers as well as entertainers these two service groups left the audience smiling the entire concert.


One of the overarching themes this year at PMEA was advocacy due to all the budget cuts that are taking place. As music educators advocacy is a term we hear often, but we often don’t do anything about it. Now more than ever we need to be proactive and begin advocating for our programs and to save music education in schools. It is not enough to just talk about advocacy with other music educators. We know the importance of music education. It is our job to advocate to the people in charge such as administration, school boards, and the government and let them know how important music is to our students. We have to fight for what we love and know is invaluable, and we have to do it now.
While at PMEA I got the opportunity to participate in an amazing music advocacy event. As past, present and future musicians, PMEA 2011 attendees gathered to sing “The Awakening” to advocate for music education in our schools, This was one of the most emotional musical experiences that I have been apart of. Now it is our job to spread this video and help to raise awareness of the job cuts that are happening and to help save the music!! Please share this video wherever you can and HELP MUSIC LIVE!!! 

Final Thoughts

Every year I leave PMEA refreshed and even more excited about music and teaching. Being surrounded by hundreds of music educators, who truly have a passion for music for two days is an absolutely amazing experience. If you have never had the opportunity to attend PMEA State Conference I urge you to attend next year. It will  be a life-changing experience!! Stay tuned for more updates and recaps based off of the sessions that I attended at PMEA 2011!!