Pacific University String Project Honored as Nation's Outstanding String Project of the Year
The Pacific University String Project has been awarded the 2018 Outstanding String Project of the Year Award by the American String Teachers Association and the National String Project Consortium.
Spearheaded by music associate professor Dr. Dijana Ihas, the Pacific University String Project gives local students from second through 12th grades an opportunity to learn to play string instruments, including the violin, viola and cello, while providing music teaching experience for Pacific’s students.
The project began in 2011 to fill a public education need for music instruction that declined as a result of funding cuts in local school districts.
The Pacific University String Project is one of 40 NSPC sites nationwide that provide music learning opportunities for children who live in school districts where string programs do not exist. This year, Dr. Ihas and nine Pacific University students are providing instruction to 125 local elementary, middle and high school students.
Pacific’s student teachers and Dr. Ihas will accept the award at the annual NSPC reception during the ASTA National Conference in Atlanta on March 7.
“I am bursting with pride for Dijana and our students,” said David DeMoss, director of Pacific’s School of Arts & Humanities. “The Strings Project is a great learning experience for our students that enriches our community in countless ways.”
The project's future looks promising as well. “We are planning to add a guitar component next fall and eventually extend the teaching opportunity to all university music education majors so that they can practice their teaching skills while working toward their undergraduate degrees,” Ihas said.