Conservatory Squared launches a New Era in Musical Internships

I am very excited to announce our new forward-looking internship program, Conservatory Squared: Grow Your Music Career Exponentially. This is a wonderful addition to our four year effort to expand the scope of a conservatory education well beyond the confines of the practice room, performance hall, and class room. Here is how it works: We have eight internship/mentorship opportunities for this coming summer. Each is much more than a summer job, for the internship providers will take a hands-on role in mentoring our students and providing valuable insights and feedback in their areas of expertise. Lawrence, through a generous $25,000 gift from the Olga Herberg Administrative Trust, will fund each internship. Conservatory Squared is the musical partner to the successful LU-R1 internship program in the sciences. We hope this will be a win, win, win situation, for the student, for Lawrence, and for the internship providers. No wonder we are so excited about this program!

At the Lawrence Conservatory, we are committed to challenge our students to think deeply about the musical life they might lead after their Lawrence education ends. I firmly believe that strong conservatory training, coupled with a broad and deep liberal arts education is absolutely the best preparation for the 21st century musician. I have previously addressed this in two blogs, one on the 21st Century Conservatory, and one on how a Lawrence Conservatory education can be a perfect preparation for the world of business.

We have also added courses on entrepreneurship in music and the arts, where musicians can flex their innovative brain power to accomplish entrepreneurial music-oriented projects. Furthermore, we have started Lawrence Scholars in Arts and Entertainment, a robust program that brings successful alumni back to campus to work with, inspire, and motivate current students. These alumni help our students see the many possible musical lives that exist beyond our hallowed halls.

Now Conservatory2 will provide a hands-on laboratory to put theory into practice. The program just launched three days ago and we are already seeing strong student interest. One look at the roster of internships, and the excitement should be of little surprise. Here is a list of our Conservatory2 internships for 2012, but please go to the website to find out more about each one.

New York Jazz Academy, Javier Arau ‘98
Oberlin Baroque Performance Institute
Carnegie Hall, Musical Connections Program, Beth Snodgrass ‘93
Deep Listening Institute, Pauline Oliveros
Oberlin in Italy, Opera institute in Italy (2 positions)
Beit Yehuda Guest House, Main Stage Manager , Jerusalem
Olivera Music Entertainment, Washington DC, Connie Trok Olivera ‘82

This a spectacular list of opportunities! What makes this even more exciting is that we already know how well this concept can work. Three years ago, Lawton Hall ’11, a composition major, expressed a strong interest in working with world-renowned composer, Pauline Oliveros at her Deep Listening Institute. Through mutual friends, I was able to contact Pauline, who was eager to take Lawton on as an intern, but had reservations because her institute did not have the ability to fund the position. Working closely with the Office of the Provost, we were able to provide the funds for this opportunity–and what an opportunity it turned out to be. Not only was Lawton able to work closely with Pauline, he became the editor of her new book of collected writings! No one imagined when Lawton was heading off for his internship he would become the editor of a major music publication—and as an undergraduate, no less!

We knew from that moment that the Conservatory Squared model could yield fantastic results for everyone involved. We are already seeking more funding to expand the program for next year. It will be a great pleasure to see this program take off and mature.
The creation of the program wouldn’t have been possible without the tireless efforts and vision of Senior Katelin Richter, who is serving this year as an intern to President Beck. Katelin worked closely with our administration, career services, and alumni relations to create the program’s structure and secure the internship opportunities. She also came up with the name and the logo! As a double degree student in Oboe Performance, and German, with a minor in Economics. Katelin’s stellar work is the perfect example of how top-notch conservatory training coupled with a superb liberal arts education can open up career opportunities in the 21st century that most incoming Freshman have never even dreamed of. Through Lawrence Scholars, classes in entrepreneurship, and now Conservatory Squared, we hope to get all of our musicians excited about their career potential from the moment they step through our doors.

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