At an elevation of 5430 ft., CU Boulder likes the view from the top and lists are no different. The Fiske Guide to Colleges 2011 recently named CU as one of top 25 major universities strong in music, according to a news release.
Laima Haley, the marketing and public relations manager of the College of Music, said the college appreciates Fiske’s praise.
“It’s nice to have the college be recognized for it,” Haley said.
Staff members directed by Edward Fiske, the former education editor of the New York Times, determined each university or college’s ratings after compiling information through questionnaires, according to the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2011 introduction.
Each surveyed institution received two versions of the questionnaire: one for the administration and one for students. The questions spanned over a large range of topics, ranging from demographics to nightlife.
After receiving the information, the staff members then created the write-ups and rankings for each university or college. Because of this the Fiske guide also disclaims how the lists and institution write-ups are subjective, something which Haley explained further.
“You have to put the rankings in their perspective,” Haley said.
The honor, Haley said, is an ongoing one as the College of Music has been listed in Fiske’s top 25 before and she credits the continued recognition to the students and faculty.
“We feel we have a unique community of musicians…where students and professors work together instead of against each other,” she said.
One such program does exactly that. Students and staff collaboratively run Pendulum New Music through ATLAS, Haley said.
“It’s a collaboration of composers who are just writing music and performers performing lots of music and multimedia,” Haley said.
Students from the College of Music also agree that the student-staff relationship is strong.
“The faculty at CU are definitely well versed in their field,” said Breana Cowart, a 23-year-old sophomore art history and music education double major who plays the trombone. “They are willing to help you. I have definitely gone to different faculty members whether it was theory or lessons or the summer and they were willing to help you.”
Chris Lessard, a 20-year-old junior music education major who plays the tuba, said he feels students benefit from the college’s size.
“It’s a small music school,” Lessard said. “Most of the classes are really small so you get to know your professors.”
Improvements, like the newly renovated Grusin Music Hall, will help enhance the musical environment students perform in, Haley said.
“We just redid the whole stage and the acoustic profile of the hall has changed,” Haley said. “It’s really an amazing upgrade.”
While the list may be subjective, Haley said she is happy for the recognition.
“It’s great to have some validation,” Haley said. “It’s great to be recognized and it’s well deserved.”
For more music education resources, visit https://www.savethemusic.org/music-education-resources/.