College of Music student ambassador and bassoonist Laynie Metsker—current Silver + Gold Scholarship recipient—recently shared with us and Future Buffs interested in music education her perspectives on our Bachelor of Music Education (BME) degrees:
I chose to go into education because the role of a music educator combines two things I adore: interpersonal work and music. I’ve always enjoyed interacting with people and my time as a band director—as well as my time spent studying to be one—are improving my leadership, teaching and social skills. Additionally, music has always been prevalent in my life and it has contributed greatly to my growth as a person. I want to share my love for music with students of my own so that they may reap the benefits of music, too.
CU Boulder’s music education program is special because it’s immersive from the beginning. Your field work starts in your first semester of your first year, when you’ll have opportunities to observe educators at work. In previous years, students have gone to nearby schools to observe classes live—because of the pandemic, we now get to watch video clips of educators leading rehearsal and then meet with those teachers over Zoom for a live interview!
Practicum will begin in your second year and you’ll have continuous chances to teach in the classroom throughout your degree. You’ll observe and teach in band, choir and orchestra settings so that you receive a well-rounded education as a result of your exposure to music education’s different tracks. Your degree ends after you spend your last semester student teaching full time.
The BME degree is a busy one but it’s manageable with prioritization skills. When I have time between classes, I try to knock out or make decent progress on my assignments … or I practice my bassoon in a nearby practice room. I also prefer to schedule all my classes in the morning so that I can have the evening to do homework and marching band and relax when I’m done. I also used my AP credits and acquired piano skills to test out of some of my classes, which has helped me to get ahead and create a more manageable schedule.
Being a music major requires accountability and the more of it you have, the easier your day-to-day life will be.