Credits needed to graduate with music ed degree higher than university standard

Music Education

By. Jessica Abrego

Quincy University Music Department has taken a leap in numbers for the 2019-2020 school year. Students have the opportunity to be in a variety of different ensembles and diverse music classes.

For music education majors finding time to juggle classes and rehearsals can be a struggle.

Emily Cintron, senior, instrumental music education major, has began her student teaching this spring and is on track to graduate in May.

“The biggest obstacle is definitely the amount of credit hours required. It’s impossible to balance the course load in a healthy way and have any sort of job or extracurricular activities. I was taking 20+ credit hours a semester with 30 transfer credits and it still took me 5 years to graduate,” Cintron said.

Amy Stollberg, director of choirs and advisor of the music education program, sees her students take more than an average course load to graduate with their degree.

“Most students at Quincy University complete 124 course hours to finish their degree,” Stollberg said. “It is very typical for our music education majors to have 150-160 credit hours.”

Macy Furguson-Smith, of Quincy Medical Group Behavioral Health, sees time management as one of students biggest issues. Smith works in the counseling center at Quincy University.

“Some of my athletes and music students don’t know how to manage their time because they are always doing something,” she said. “You’re not even thinking about having 15-20 minutes to sit and say ‘what do I need? What can I do when I get out of practice, choir, or band so that I can do better the next day.”

Junior, Makayla Briggs, is also a music education major. She transferred to QU from John Wood Community College to finish her bachelors degree. Briggs spends about 10 plus hours going to class, practicing, and being in rehearsals.

“I wake up around 7 a.m., get ready, come to school around 10, go to my classes until about 6 at night, sometimes even later, then rehearsals,” she said. “I usually don’t get home until 9 p.m.. Sometimes I have free time. Monday and Wednesday I find time between my classes to practice. Tuesdays and Thursdays I go from 9 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., with no breaks in between. So that is a little difficult.”

Not only does Briggs have a full course load, but she also had some classes that did not transfer in. As Cintron is nearing the end of her bachelors degree she was able to reflect on her full work load.

“Honestly all of the classes have been helpful, there are just a lot of classes that could be planned better in order to suit education majors,” Cintron said. “I wouldn’t have minded taking so many credit hours if my professors had been prepared for class every day.”

Joshua Crowl, junior music education major, is also faced with a challenging course load that has classes not relevant to his degree.

“Some of the classes, like survey of exceptional students, is important to take and I don’t have an issue taking that class,” he said. “Although if I am not put in a music classroom to observe and see how music educators use it in the real world there is not point in me taking the class.”

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