Why Attending a Summer Music Camp Will Help Your Child Get Into Their Dream College
By Donna Schwartz
Many parents believe that sending their children to summer science camps, pre-College classes and test preparation classes will increase the chances of getting accepted into the Ivy Leagues or other Dream Colleges.
They very well may, but is that enough to make your child stand out?
The Benefits of Music
There has been much research illustrating the advantages of studying music throughout one’s life, especially during childhood. Music involves use of the entire brain in order to address the challenges of coordinating many different body parts and interpreting musical notation and expressing it through an instrument or the voice.
“…children involved in music have larger growth of neural activity than people not in music training. When you’re a musician and you’re playing an instrument, you have to be using more of your brain.”
Dr. Eric Rasmussen, chair of the Early Childhood Music Department at the Peabody Preparatory of The Johns Hopkins University.
Many colleges are looking for that unique student: that special young adult that is creative, multi-dimensional, works well with others, and is a great communicator.
Performing in a band, orchestra or chorus helps students learn how to work well with others (which is what employers are looking for these days). Daily practicing and creating an effective practice routine helps a student self-critique, problem-solve, and patiently work towards reaching a goal that is not immediate. (Learning how to delay gratification is crucial for achieving success.)
How can a Summer Music Camp improve your child’s chances to get into their Dream College?
Students that attend summer music camps get the opportunity to develop all of those skills in a fun, safe environment. They get to meet peers from all over the world and learn about different cultures in a setting free from the distractions of school, and often, social media. Students get exposed to different learning styles, which can help them problem-solve their own challenges and/or help others.
When I attended Boston University’s Tanglewood Institute as a teenager, I was immersed in the beautiful Northeastern scenery of trees and hills that I had not experienced before. I had met people from the Philippines, Taiwan, Germany and many other U.S. states, who I am still friends with to this day.
Your child doesn’t have to want to major in music in college either. Many of my Tanglewood friends did not go on to major in music. Instead, they chose law, medicine, science, teaching and other professions.
There are many prestigious summer music camps to choose from, like the Tanglewood Institute in Massachusetts, Interlochen in Michigan, USDAN in NY, California Summer Music at Sonoma University, Idyllwild Arts Academy, Litchfield Jazz Camps or the Jamey Aebersold Jazz Camps in Kentucky. Some camps allow for participation from students in middle school, and High School Freshmen and Sophomores.
Having attended any of these music camps (or the many other fine camps across the country) is unique enough to make your child’s college application stand out from the others and give your child an edge in the admissions process.
Donna Schwartz has taught Band, Jazz Band and General Music in public schools for over 14 years, and private Brass and Saxophone lessons for over 27 years. She has performed on saxophones in NY and Los Angeles with artists such as Vicci Martinez from NBC’s The Voice, Richie Cannata from Billy Joel’s band, and Bobby Rondinelli from Blue Oyster Cult, at such notable venues as The Orpheum Theatre (LA), City National Grove of Anaheim, The Paramount, World Cafe Live, Wolf Den (Mohegan Sun), Riverhead Blues Festival and the Patchogue Theatre. She attended the Tanglewood Institute in 1987 and the New York State Summer School for the Arts in 1986.
Donna teaches Trumpet and Saxophone Lessons and Audition Coaching locally in the San Gabriel Valley, and online via Skype. Her website is: www.DonnaSchwartzMusic.com/teaching/private-music-lessons