Sunday, March 12, 2006

My University Hunt

From Oklahoma City University's Wanda L. Bass School of Music website

I really like that picture, and the website too, and I suppose they'll forgive me for copying it over considering the free advertising - notice the Powerbook to the left, I'll mention why later.

I've been super busy mostly with things to do with my plans for grad studies, and I figure this particular posting will be more a reminder for me for the way things are going. But feel free to peek, heh heh. I may update this post from time to time, with updates in some color or another... maybe I'll leave a link on the side bar. I'm going to be mean and write about unis with a direct corelation of print size and readibility to how I grade them at present.

Applied and Responded
Indiana University South Bend: the scholarship consisting a full tuition waiver has just recently been upgraded to include housing as well, with a possible administrative assistantship. Smaller campus, but being part of a larger institution, the degree will come from Indiana University - very cool accreditation for music. The professor's resume is impressive, and he's a chamber music specialist. Plus I have a friend at IUSB, and I have met a representative of the uni. International relations is great, but other areas of administration have much to be desired. Considering South Bend not a big city, other living costs should be lower. Chicago is nearby.

Recently Applied: Responses expected end of March/early April
These five Australian universities waived their application fees - and the IDP people, who have a branch in Penang, certified all the documents and couriered that with the audition DVD for free. Something has to be said for a fantastic marketing strategy - a welcome surprise considering their email network is a pain. Chances for matching the offer from IUSB will be minimal, but the Australian dollar is at 2.77, the American is at 3.73. Waiting for a direct contact to someone at the University of Melbourne.

The University of Sydney - Better recognized name when it comes to Australian universitites. A low staff to student ratio, and in Australia, this and Melbourne have the most credible professional orchestras nearby. The most expensive Australian city in to live in. Apparently good for gigs to help with this, but this is of course, no guarantee. Quality of staff unknown but contact representatives gave a good first impression.

The University of Tazmania - I don't fancy the fact that the prof for viola is not solely on that instrument but teaches and performs both on the violin and viola. In every case I have known at this level, there needs to be some specialization. Otherwise, his CV seems impressive, he has sponsored his own graduate scholarship, which shows some dedication to teaching, a major plus point.

The University of Adelaide - The violist here was a student of the one in Tazmania, and he's the head of department for strings. I haven't heard great reviews of the Adelaide Symphony. On the other hand, I really like Adelaide as a small city, beautiful place, and I know some people there too.

The University of Queensland - not much info, but the masters only takes one-and-a-half years.

The University of New South Wales - again, no info. Masters is not performance based, but it only takes a year to complete.

Sent Audition DVD, Without Formal Application

Michigan State University - I paid good money to FedEx to send a DVD there (only the second time I've done so), first because my folks studied there and were keen... later I realized that I really like that campus too; a beautiful, welcoming place. The viola prof's resume is impressive, and he emailed a willingness to call me here in Malaysia. Graduate assistantships are not available right now, but may be available later. Other forms of financial aid possible. A big campus with more opportunities that come with it. Should be able to get a feel of things when the DVD arrives, and I get the call from the prof in a couple of days, and I can decide whether to send a formal application.

Oklahoma City University - I'm not blown away with the prof's resume, and chances are there won't be an assistantship - plus there'll be hassle with OCU because they're more sticky that my first degree wasn't in music. So, very unlikely that this will be on any realistic list of considered unis, but still - what a place! 1 million for Apple products for the use of students - whoo-hoo!

University of Central Arkansas - Looks like a place with more concentration on wind bands. Possible graduate assistantships, and recognizes Mahidol University for in-state fees. No viola prof listed, so will have to see - like with OCU, passed DVD to rep at an education fair.

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