Why We Do It

Scholarship Entrant: Michael from West Islip, New York
Essay Question: If you could earn a living doing what you love most, what would it be, and how would it change the world? Describe the specific goals you would set to make that dream a reality.
Vote for Michael: 1

It’s a bold move on the part of those who dreamt up this prompt. Asking for a 250 word essay that touches on not only one’s greatest passion in life, but also how that individual’s passion will change the world.

Fortunately, my love for teaching, performing and writing music and the capacity for those activities to change the world is an old one. The idea of music as a source of both personal growth and spiritual renewal is one that is shared by individuals across cultural, racial, and even religious boundaries.

My immediate goals fall a bit short of world changing. I plan to finish my music education degree at the Ithaca College Conservatory of music and continue to gig, write, and record on the side. However, these short-term goals will put me in a position where I can begin to tackle bigger goals. Such as teaching in the public schools, recording more professional sounding music, and going on extensive tours in support of that music.

It is my belief that these actions offer opportunities for the opening of new dialogues. These dialogues can expose individuals to cultures different from their own in culturally and personally affirming ways. Music is gateway for humanization and mutual respect that is essential before social change can come about. A conversation about music can be deeply personal in a way that forces one party to recognize the humanity of the other. It all starts with a conversation, and music can be the language.

Vote for Michael: 1

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