Student Blogs

Students share their experiences…

Please ask these students any questions you may have about these opportunities furthering their educational experience, inside and outside of the Music Department. They have knowledge of their own that they are more than willing to share with you! Feel free to contact them by e-mail if they include it in their bio.

Senior Music Education and Performance Major on Saxophone

Senior Music Education and Performance Major on Saxophone

Julia Kane

Community Music School Intern (Summer 2016-2017)

"For the past two summers, I was an intern for the Community Music School’s (CMS) Jazz Camp. Every summer, the University of Delaware’s Community Music School offers a wide variety of summer camps for students. The CMS Jazz Camp is one week long, and is run by UD’s Jazz Director, Tom Palmer. During the week, the students are exposed to a variety of different topics in jazz, such as jazz history, theory, and improvisation. The students learn six jazz charts during the camp and perform in a concert on the last day of camp. Each intern is given one tune to rehearse and conduct with the students. Interning for the CMS Jazz Camp is a fun and rewarding experience, in addition to being a great way to get hands-on teaching experience.

During rehearsals for the Jazz Camp Concert, I would help to fix any mistakes that I heard in the saxophone section, in addition to making what they were playing sound better. When running the rehearsal, I would address musical aspects such as dynamics, phrasing, articulation and style. I would explain to the students how each sections of the band contributed in the jazz tune. When the theory portion of the camp was being taught, students would learn various scales, arpeggios and would learn to play them. Students were exposed to major, minor whole tone and mixolydian scales. During the jazz theory class, I would play the scales along with the students on the saxophone. The students were also given a copy of  Jamey Aebersold’s Jazz Handbook to use as a visual reference.

Each day of camp, I would run the saxophone sectional. I would make the sectionals enjoyable for the students while still teaching and fixing the musical issues in the jazz tunes.  I would address aspects of basic saxophone technique, such as embouchure, articulation, air speed, and tone. I would also give them a new warmup exercise, or a scale exercise, each day to work on at home. I would also address any difficult spots in the jazz charts that the students were working on during the week. Being the saxophone intern for the past two summers was an enjoyable and fun experience. I would encourage anyone who is interested in interning for the CMS Jazz Camp to apply!"

If you have any questions, please contact Julia at

Senior Music Education Major on Horn

Senior Music Education Major on Horn

Kevin Flaherty

Community Music School Intern (Summer 2017)

"I have had the pleasure of working in two positions with the UD Community Music School for the Summer of 2017. The first of these positions was an Intern in the School’s Choir Camp. The camp lasted for a week in June, and featured rehearsal settings both in vocal instruction and in instrumental accompaniment. The campers worked diligently to prepare a challenging, yet fun program for a concert at the end of the week. My role as an Intern was twofold: assisting the directors with the behind-the-scenes aspects of the camp, such as setting up for rehearsals, snack breaks, and checking students in/out; and participating in rehearsals as a pseudo-camper. I got the opportunity to conduct one of the pieces the campers performed, and it was a wonderful experience for me, given that I intend to work as a music teacher in the near future. I was inspired by the directors’ enthusiasm and passion for their jobs, as well as by the children’s work ethic and performance capability.

Since that position ended, I have been working in the Roselle Center for the Arts’s office as a Coordinator for the CMS summer camp program as a whole. I assist the other two coordinators, as well as the camp director, in administrative duties like camp check in/check out, as well as providing an overall oversight for all campers partaking in the activities for the week. These activities are different week in and week out, ranging from Steel Band camp to a Theatre production of Seussical: The Musical. In this position, I still got to work with the campers, but also took on more responsibility in communicating with parents and other building staff, and gained a sense of how a true behind-the-scenes system runs. Working in this position has been an eye-opener for me as to how the department truly operates, and how much work, dedication and cooperation must go into running an organization like the Community Music School. The experience has been truly worthwhile!"

If you have any questions, please contact Kevin at

Junior Music Management Major on Flute, Business Administration Minor

Junior Music Management Major on Flute, Business Administration Minor

Mackenzie Mathis

Marketing Intern at Jazz at Lincoln Center, NYC (Summer 2016)

"Going into college, I had zero interest in anything business related. I thought I knew for a fact that all I wanted to do in life was to teach music. However, my parents asked me to minor in music management on top of my music education degree.  Although I wasn’t originally thrilled about studying anything related to business, I ended up becoming very interested in music management.  Halfway through my freshman year, I decided that I wanted to get an internship for the summer to see if I truly liked it.  After a long application process, I ended up working as a marketing intern at Jazz at Lincoln Center, in Manhattan.  As an intern, I worked three full work days a week. I did everything from running errands to writing mass emails sent to a mailing list of 29,000 people. I also helped market our programs, including the Student Ticket program and our children’s program, WeBop.  In the office, on a daily basis, I had the opportunity to interact with different members and experience different areas of the marketing department. I also loved working in Manhattan, which greatly contributed to my internship experience. Every day, I could explore a different part of the city, eat lunch in different parks, or go on walks to new places. Being in the city gave me the opportunity to experience so much art and culture this summer, something I am very grateful for.

Something I discovered was that being in the workforce, especially for the first time, is a huge adjustment. You learn a lot very quickly, solely by being immersed in a work environment. Many arts organizations can be fast-paced, busy, and possibly a little chaotic, so you learn a lot as you go on the job. Logistically, the internship was very taxing for me personally. Because I don’t live close to Manhattan, I had to commute six hours each day, which made for very long, exhausting days. This obviously does not happen to everyone and is not the norm, depending on where you decide to work. But it is something that you have to keep in mind.  It is also important to know that it is very possible your future internship is unpaid. While paying for transportation, this can be difficult for many students. That being said, interning at Jazz at Lincoln Center was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had, and I would definitely encourage everyone to apply for an internship if they have any interest."

If you have any questions, please contact Mackenzie at

Junior Marketing Major, Music Management Minor

Junior Marketing Major, Music Management Minor

Brian Kerwick

Live Nation Premium Seat Sales Intern (Summer 2016-2017)

"Working with Live Nation’s Premium Seat Sales team for a second year offered me a new perspective to approaching a corporate company with relative experience in hand.  Live Nation is one of the premier entertainment booking, concert promotion, and operation companies in the world.  I assisted in running the Northwell Health Jones Beach Theatre in Long Island, a venue where I grew up seeing concerts in my childhood and growing up.  The outdoor amphitheater seats 15,000 music worshippers overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.  It also offers an open-air VIP lounge with exciting features such as a boardwalk to walk along the beach and watch the show, premium dining experiences featuring fine wine and craft beers, and an upscale private area to gather with friends prior to the show.

My roles and responsibilities entailed overseeing all operations of the venue to ensure the happiness of our VIP clients, delegating leadership tasks to the interns and overseeing their progress, recording ticket counts to calculate revenue streams for every show, and acting as a concierge for a VIP dining room upgrade.  As this position requires a personal approach to interpersonal responsibilities, I was able to collect experience in leadership, management, communication, and the logistics of executing large events.  I also developed many skills around decision making, as much of the job requires quick thinking and dealing with unexpected issues that need to be resolved quickly to minimize client impacts. 

It was incredible to be surrounded by those who love music every night at work and be in an environment where music was the cornerstone of the evening.  I would encourage anybody who loves live concert performances and interacting with customers to apply for this internship.  I am happy to answer any questions you may have!"

If you have any questions, please contact Brian at

Senior Music Management Major on Saxophone, 4+1 MBA Graduate Student

Senior Music Management Major on Saxophone, 4+1 MBA Graduate Student

Nicole Talerico

4+1 Music Management/MBA Graduate Student

When I first heard about the 4+1 MBA program at UD, I immediately knew it was something I was interested in applying for. At the time, I was a junior and I had just switched majors from music education to music management. I knew I was interested in working in arts management after graduation, but at that point I had little direction and no business or managerial skills to show for that goal. Now I’m beginning the second year of the MBA program and my final year at UD, and I’m so grateful for the opportunity to gain practical administrative skills and to earn an advanced degree in business in just one extra year! So far, I’ve taken grad-level classes in accounting, economics, statistics, organizational behavior, business ethics, and international business. This upcoming year, I’ll take classes in finance, operations management, marketing, leadership, and corporate strategy.

The 4+1 MBA is an accelerated graduate program through the Lerner College of Business and Economics that lasts a total of 5 years: 4 years for an undergraduate degree, and then a 5th additional year to earn a master’s degree. The program gives music management students a head start on earning a Master’s in Business Administration (MBA), which is a great degree option to consider if you’re seeking any managerial or administrative position in the arts. The coursework aims at giving students the most practical and applicable education to apply to their own personal knowledge and industries. You can also pick a major or a concentration within the MBA, such as Marketing, Entrepreneurial Studies, or Strategic Leadership, to focus your studies in one particular area. I personally decided not to choose a major so I could diversify my classes for a broader understanding of the business environment.

The 4+1 MBA is also a great financial decision because the cost of the graduate courses taken during your 4th/senior year is covered by your undergraduate tuition cost! This reduces the expense of the master’s program significantly. If you plan to take some undergraduate business classes, you can even waive graduate classes by taking two or more 300/400 level classes in each topic."

If you have any questions, please contact Nicole at

Senior Music Education Major on Piano

Senior Music Education Major on Piano

Anna Krammes

Music Education Supervisor for Jamaica Field Service Project (Winter 2017)

"Jamaica Field Service Project (JAFSP) is a 10 day service learning program that brings school supplies, tutors, musical instruments and instruction to schools throughout Jamaica. Any university student interested in Education, Music Education, Music Therapy, or Nursing from across the United States and Canada are eligible to apply. I participated in the January trip of 2017 during University of Delaware’s winter session, and it was one of the best decisions I have ever made. The program gave me more teaching opportunities with elementary and middle school students. It has made me appreciate things that we normally take for granted, and gave me a chance to learn about another country’s culture.

I was fortunate enough to be requested back to the Jamaica Field Service Project program because they needed another music education supervisor for June’s trip. I was incredibly lucky and thankful for the opportunity and immediately accepted the offer! My job involved advising and teaching the programs’ lesson plans to 30 undergraduate students from across the United States to the elementary and middle school students in Jamaica. The lesson plans ranged from learning Jamaican folk tunes, drumming patterns, and songs on the recorder. It was challenging at first because I have never taught undergraduate students before, but I gained a lot of knowledge in leadership and communication skills. Just within this past year I have learned so much about teaching because of this program, and I hope to have many more opportunities to keep teaching in other countries in the future."

If you have any questions, please contact Anna at

Junior Music Education Major on Piano

Junior Music Education Major on Piano

Tristan Leung

Summer Service Learning Scholar (Summer 2017)

"This summer, I was given the opportunity to continue research for the Beat Goes On project, under the direction of Dr. Suzanne L. Burton. The project is part of the Service-Learner Scholar’s branch of the University of Delaware’s Summer Scholars program, which is run by assistant director, Susan Serra. During the past 10 weeks, we have collaborated with four community partners: Capital Music Camp, The Cathedral Choir School of Delaware, Girls, Inc., and the Salvation Army. My fellow partners, Anna Krammes and Danny Piñeyro, and I have been going to these music camps and organizations to teach children how to create music with unconventional ways. Our focus is creation and composition through technology, specifically on Apple iPads. Implementing several apps of different natures directed at different audiences and age groups, we were able to have the kids explore through a variety of apps and creating different projects. We decided to have the younger student play with apps that were geared more towards exploration and interaction such as “Toca Band”, where you are presented with a group of animated characters that sing or make music when you drag them onto a selected performance circle. For the older groups, we had them work towards a final product, such as a short composition on Garage Band.

The diminishing funding of the arts in the public-school systems has been a growing concern to our nation, resulting in programs being reduced or completely cut. Another topic of discussion is the effect of fund inequality – money is being taken from public schools, which is then given to charter and private schools. Keeping these implications in mind, we had to ask ourselves the social question of whether students are being deprived of musical opportunities. It was amazing watching the students’ processes and their end products – it was very apparent that music is an innate form of human expression, and that anybody, no matter age or background, can be musical. That is why it is important for us to give back to the community and provide resources for children who may not have access.

Throughout this experience, the students were not the only ones who learned something – we as future music educators gained knowledge about classroom management, lesson planning, and how to be flexible. The Beat Goes On has also been a good way of getting my feet wet before going into practicum this coming fall semester. This has been such an unforgettable and invaluable summer, and I am excited to see the Beat Goes On continue in the future!"

If you have any questions, please contact Tristan at

Junior Music Education Major on Flute

Junior Music Education Major on Flute

Danny Piñeyro

Summer Service Learning Scholar (Summer 2017)

"During the spring semester of 2017, I decided that I wanted to apply for the service-learning summer scholar program.  Service-learning scholars provide students the opportunity to immerse themselves in a service-learning or community-based research project for ten weeks during the summer in a setting outside of the classroom. Fortunately, I was accepted into the program along with my fellow peers, Tristan Leung and Anna Krammes, to work on The Beat Goes On, a project directed by Dr. Suzanne L. Burton. Together, we taught students varying from the ages of 5-14 how to create music on iPads. Originally, I joined this program because I wanted to get a head start on student teaching. Music education majors start practicum during their junior fall semester and this program would take place right before I entered the schools. Additionally, every January I run a workshop in Corona, Queens. This workshop is called the Corona Youth Music Project, a program founded to empower youth, fight poverty, and promote social inclusion through music education and performance. I felt that this program aligned itself with those ideals and I could do something similar here in Delaware. What I didn’t know was that this program would offer me so much more than that.

This summer we worked with four community partners: Capital Music School Camp, Cathedral Choir School of Delaware, Salvation Army Summer Camp, and Girls, Inc. During our visits, we gave the children the opportunity to create music projects on apps such as Garage Band, Launchpad, Loopseque, and many more. We would give small lessons at the beginning of class and allow the students to explore and create. It was incredible to see what the children came up with in a matter of minutes. It takes a whole village to raise a child. As future music educators, we must learn how to provide opportunities for our students. I am proud of the work we have done and look forward to seeing this project flourish in the future. Together, we can make a difference one child at a time."

If you have any questions, please contact Danny at