The topic tonight was: What are effective recruitment techniques for music programs?
From a student’s point of view, recruitment is a lot of fun! (Or maybe that could be just my point of view…you never know!) I always loved showing younger students our music program because I was proud of it. I was lucky to go to school in a district with a very successful music program, recruiting kids never seemed to be a problem. (I should really ask my high school choir and orchestra teachers how they did it, because they built their programs from scratch!)
The most popular technique seems to be setting a time for younger and older students to interact, whether it be older students going to the middle and elementary schools to perform or younger students joining upperclassman in their activities. I think this tweet pretty much summed this technique up best:
Recruitment is also important because it keeps your program growing/evolving/moving.
Agreed times 100. The earlier they get involved, the longer they will commit.
A lot of collegiate ensembles, particularly choral groups since they travel lightly, will do a recruitment tour around a region of their state, or perhaps out of state. Not only is it awesome fun, (again, this may be my opinion!) but you reach audiences who may decide what school to attend based on the choir they hear! The younger students get a chance to hear a collegiate ensemble, and they get to know the director and possibly have conversations with them and other students.
Another technique that was mentioned last night was having a good relationship with the other music teachers in your school system.
I think this is so important! If you have music teachers working together from when students start school to when they graduate high school you are going to have a strong and stable program. (Of course, their are program cuts and unavoidable budget issues which make that statement a little less true and slightly more realistic.)
Music Education isn’t something that one can advocate alone…we need all the support we can get! Teachers need to work together.
Did you miss the chat last night but still have some thoughts on recruitment techniques? Leave a comment!
If you are interested in getting involved in #MusEdChat check out MusicEdMajor.net – the chat is held on Twitter on Monday nights at 8pm EST. It’s a great deal of fun and knowledge from musicians and educators around the world!