As valued leaders in music education, the CMA Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the Country Music Association, arranged for 12-time CMA Award winner Keith Urban to meet with students from Hillwood High School in Nashville yesterday, Nov. 30. The unannounced visit with the school’s Rock Band, Orchestra, Choir and Band programs saw Urban hosting a Q&A session that discussed, amongst other things, songwriting, performing and the music industry. In addition to offering students tips and words of encouragement to further their music education, Urban was treated to two student performances in preparation for their winter concerts, one from the school’s Rock Band and the other from its String Orchestra, which performed Urban’s hit “Wasted Time.”
“There is nothing more fulfilling than experiencing the incredible impact music has on a student’s life,” says Tiffany Kerns, Executive Director, CMA Foundation. “Whether they are performing music or talking about the transformative power of music, yesterday’s school visit reiterated that our priority in education is always our students’ ability to be successful, heard, and seen. Keith provided insight on his musical journey but more importantly, he shared a commonality with the students – music making is life changing and critical to our next generation.”
Since its inception in 2011, the CMA Foundation has been committed to improving and sustaining music programs throughout the U.S. so all students have equitable opportunities to participate in a high-quality music education. The CMA Foundation believes music and the arts are part of a well-rounded education, investing $27 million to support these efforts over the last 10 years. During this time, the CMA Foundation has observed why music programs are not thriving, seeing first-hand the challenges educators are facing and, most importantly, the systemic issues that must be addressed in order for every child to have access to music. Committed to its vision, the CMA Foundation is working directly with school districts to identify needs, understand their challenges, build community support and develop local and national resources from partners as part of the non-profit’s systems change model.
To make a donation in support of the CMA Foundation’s efforts, click HERE.