I knew from the time I was a junior in high school that I would be a professional musician; however, I also suspected that music education would be a part of my future. During my undergraduate years, I really thought that I would become a junior high or high school band director, but the strong bonds that I formed with college faculty members convinced me that higher education was where I belonged.
One of my proudest accomplishments as a performer was my 1992 appearance as a soloist with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra. It was a great thrill to perform the Weber Concertino for Clarinet with them.
I always want the material in my classes to be relevant for the students. I try to focus on parallels between the past and the present. In my music theory classes, I always use a wide range of styles and genres.
My course on popular music and the Vietnam War came directly out of research that I did on my first sabbatical in fall 2000. My more recent research on the development of British Invasion rock and roll has led directly to my First Year Seminar, “Beyond the Beatles.”
Best Part of the Job
Working with students and serving in an institution in which faculty members clearly focused on the best interests of our students is very rewarding. I feel very fortunate to work at an institution where we can put aside our differences and focus so intently on students.
Home for the Ensembles
I like Cope Music Hall because it is a real home for the music faculty and all the students, including music majors and all the non-majors who participate in the choirs, bands, orchestra, private lessons and small groups.
What Makes Mount Union Unique
I think what makes Mount Union unique is the personal touch – the fact that students and faculty work so closely together and that we can and do communicate one on one as much as we do.
The professional programs, such as music performance, music education, athletic training, sport business and all of the others, are quite strong at Mount Union. Beyond that, though, I believe that the entire Mount Union experience opens students up to seeing the world around them in many different and important ways. The broad view of the world is necessary in the 21st century job market.