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Music was my first passion. I grew up in a creative environment that allowed me to sing and play instruments from the time I knew how to talk.
I was in choir and band since it was offered at my school in third grade, and I took every other opportunity to perform throughout my school career, even trying out for audition-based ensembles. In high school, my elective classes were always taken up my music— I was happiest when I was singing or playing my French horn.
I knew that in college it would probably be harder for me to fit music into my schedule. I was planning on double majoring, so I wasn’t sure if I would have time to take music classes or be in the ensembles. At the activities fair, I talked to some choir members and decided to try it out.
I went to my first rehearsal, and after a summer of no musical endeavors, I remembered the feeling of pure joy I had during that first rehearsal. I had missed music more than I had anticipated, and decided right there that I would also audition for Chamber Choir, which is the select ensemble for choir at Arcadia. Even though this audition made me nervous, I yearned for more musical outlets than a once-a-week choir class could give me. To my surprise, I got in!
Since Arcadia ensembles also double as classes— and as a first-year, I was not allowed to take over 18 credits— I had to take University Choir for noncredit. Although this meant I was doing a lot of work for no tangible reward, I stuck with it because I was having so much fun. So much fun, in fact, that I decided to declare a minor in music. I knew that it would be hard to achieve with a double major, but declaring my minor (and the promise of more music classes) gave me an incentive for future semesters.
Many people are intrigued that I’m minoring in Music, due to my double majors being Criminal Justice and Sociology. People often discount students who aren’t art majors as less creatively inclined, which is a bit frustrating. Although I love the areas that I’m studying, music is equally important to me. Music gives me a creative and expressive outlet for my emotions, and being engrossed in a composition project for my music class makes me less stressed about the extensive amount of work for my major courses.
Unfortunately, enrollment in music classes has been fairly low in the past few years. I described this as unfortunate because music courses are getting cut due to this, and students who are interested may not be able to learn such an amazing subject from the wonderful and experienced staff at Arcadia. Having a Music minor and pursuing music through the courses offered at Arcadia have enriched my college experience and solidified my passion for the creative arts— despite being a “non-creative” major.
I would encourage all of those interested to go to Murphy Hall and examine the list of courses offered at Arcadia, as well as the music events that happen around campus every semester. By participating and attending these, you’ll be keeping arts education at Arcadia healthy and strong. So explore what the music department has to offer! I’m certain you’ll find something to enjoy.