I have taught Music in Tanzania, Turkey, Thailand, Egypt and in Nepal. I have been a Music Educator for the past 13 years, where I have served as a choir director, band director, vocal and piano instructor and drum circle facilitator. I have led international choral festivals in Austria, Germany, Australia, Hawaii and in New York City. I have been a Church Organist and Choir Director for the past 18 years. I am also the Founder and President of The DAR Project, a 501(c)(3) non-profit based in Tanzania, East Africa that funds music programming and education for orphans.
I believe each student can be successful in the classroom, and it is the role of the teacher to facilitate and diversify instruction so that this is possible. Through any subject or topic in the classroom, the teacher’s approach and diversification of the instruction can and will set the student up for success—I believe as the role of an educator, it is imperative to keep the students in the forefront of the lesson and focus on honing the skills of each child in the classroom. The teacher has the ability to create a positive and creative learning experience for each child in the classroom. As an educator, I believe it is our role and duty to ensure each student in the classroom has a positive experience, is comfortable in the classroom and able to explore their own academic interests and build upon these desires in the classroom. Fostering skills in students that make them excited and eager to learn is the goal of the educator in the classroom. Creating a desire in each student to learn, want to explore the topics in the classroom and participate in classroom activities and projects is the goal of the teacher. In order to make the classroom a positive and comfortable for students, the teacher must create an environment where the students feel that the teacher supports them, their academics and is there as a positive role model – encouraging students and maintaining a positive approach in the classroom will assist the teacher in reaching these goals in the classroom: where each student is successful and is in a positive, creative, learning environment.
I have presented at state and national level conferences on Arts Advocacy including the Fiscal Policy Institute of New York State, WorldStrides, DC MEA and NAfME. I have also presented in front of Senate members on "Why Music? Why We Need Music Education in Our Schools." I am a featured music journalist and regular contributor on AFT Voices, USA Today, Making Music magazine and International Musician publications. I published my first book, "30 Countries in 30 Years," which is available at Barnes & Noble.
My Bachelor and Master degrees in Music Education and Music Industry are from Syracuse University. I also attended the graduate program at Columbia University's Teachers College where I studied Urban Education and Music. I have studied with faculty at the Van Cliburn Piano Institute in Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas and at the Eastman Piano Institute in Rochester, New York. I have also trained in schools and orphanages in Tanzania, Thailand, Nepal, Turkey and Egypt where I have developed and built music programs.