The purpose of the Sound Life scholarship is to promote music education, academic success, and healthy living by providing financial support for eligible music students pursuing post-secondary studies.
ABOUT THE SOUND LIFE SCHOLARSHIP
My name is Michael Fitch. I am a high school music teacher. Every day I witness first-hand the positive benefits of learning music. In the classroom I witness young people learning discipline and focus and improving their minds in a way that will improve their success in all areas. I also witness music serving as an outlet for creativity and a platform for expression. When you write or perform music you express yourself and in doing so you can find peace of mind and equilibrium. I witness students engaging in musical endeavors outside of the classroom as well. Students gather in my classroom at lunchtime to play guitar and show each other different songs they have learned. After school students prepare for performances or record songs they have written and their collaboration allows them to connect with one another. These are all benefits of music in education but perhaps the most valuable aspect is the engagement achieved.
Unfortunately, in the past, I have also observed what happens when young people lack engagement. When they are not given a platform to express themselves, the activities to engage them, or the means to achieve peace of mind they will find alternatives. Young people in this situation will often turn to alcohol, tobacco, and drugs. Sometimes they simply lack a reason not to.
Music has disappointed me in this regard. There is unfortunately a 'culture of consumption' (alcohol, tobacco, drugs) that is closely associated with music. I want to fight this misconception. I want to support music in education and I want to promote healthy living. For these reasons I have established the Sound Life Scholarship program. The scholarship will be granted to students who are passionate about music, continuing their studies, have an overall successful academic standing, and who choose to pursue a healthy lifestyle. Knowing that this scholarship is available to them may be enough of a reason for some people to put their music, their studies, and their health first.
Because of your support, the Sound Life Scholarship pilot program has successfully been implemented at Lake of Two Mountains High School with 1st place recipients receiving grants of $1000 each for the 2016 and 2017 school years. Thanks to the successful pilot program, the scholarship is now available to any eligible students in Canada.
Funds that we raise will allow this scholarship to be available to more students and for more years to come. Please give generously! Let's give a generation a reason to pursue a sound life!
Thank you for your continued support!
Sound Life Scholarship
START YOUR APPLICATION TODAY
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Can I apply?
Any student attending secondary school in Canada may apply in their final year of secondary school.
The eligibility criteria for students are:
- Passion for music (Participation in music extra-curricular activities and high performance in music class.)
- Overall successful academic standing
- Commitment to healthy living and abstention from use of drugs, alcohol, or tobacco
- Continuing their education at a non-secondary institution (CEGEP, university, technical or trade institute, etc.)
How do I apply?
To apply, students must a) Signal their intention to apply at the beginning of their final year of secondary school and b) submit a portfolio that demonstrates that they have met the selection criteria.
How will it be decided who wins the scholarship?
We review the applications and choose the recipients based on the strength of the portfolios. Each student's portfolio should include 5 signed letters of endorsement, proof of enrolment at a non-secondary educational institution for the upcoming school year, a copy of their secondary 5 or grade 12 end-of-year transcript, and an essay composed by the student detailing how they have met the selection criteria.
How can you prove that students aren't abusing substances?
We can't. No special inquisitive measures will be taken. The honour system will be used. That being said, multiple letters of endorsement from different sources will be required (dated at the end of the school year) attesting that the applicant has fulfilled the requirements.
What is the money for?
The recipients can use the money as they like. It is likely that it will be used to help cover tuition and book costs but it could also be used to help recipients pursue musical endeavors while studying.
Do the students who win have to study music after high school?
No. They must demonstrate a passion for music but can be enrolled in any non-secondary educational institution.
I would like to donate to the charity in general. Can I get a tax receipt?
Yes. Tax receipts are emailed to donors. The Sound Life Scholarship is registered as a Canadian Charity under the name Les Fonds Sonitus Vitae.
What do you hope to accomplish?
I hope to change the lives of several people by inspiring them and motivating them with this scholarship. Beyond that I hope to change young people's perceptions and address the notion that substance abuse is normal and acceptable. I also hope to eliminate the misconception that drugs and alcohol are musical accessories.