NAfME Awards Shannon Kelly Kane Scholarships to Tori Condra and Elizabeth Jones of the University of Indianapolis

NAfME Awards Shannon Kelly Kane Scholarships to Tori Condra and Elizabeth Jones of the University of Indianapolis

Tori and Elizabeth were presented the scholarships during the June 2024 NAfME National Leadership Assembly and Collegiate Leadership Advocacy Summit. The Shannon Kelly Kane Scholarship was created by Shannon's family and friends in coordination with NAfME to honor her exemplary life and her love of teaching music.

HERNDON, Va., June 13, 2024 The National Association for Music Education (NAfME) honored Tori Condra and Elizabeth Jones of the University of Indianapolis in Indiana as the recipients of the 2024 Shannon Kelly Kane Scholarship. Tori and Elizabeth were presented the scholarships during the June 2024 NAfME National Leadership Assembly and Collegiate Leadership Advocacy Summit. The Shannon Kelly Kane Scholarship was created by Shannon's family and friends in coordination with NAfME to honor her exemplary life and her love of teaching music. The scholarship award is open to current NAfME Collegiate members, who have been nominated for NAfME Collegiate Professional Achievement Recognition.

"NAfME is very proud to honor the legacy of Shannon Kelly Kane, and this year we are pleased to offer this recognition to two outstanding recipients," said NAfME President Deb Confredo. "On behalf of the National Executive Board, it is my pleasure to offer our most sincere congratulations to Tori Condra and Elizabeth Jones for their dedication, leadership, and outstanding service. These recipients have made significant contributions to music education early in their careers. We wish these future music educators well and look forward to learning about their continued success in the future."

These recipients have made significant contributions to music education early in their careers. We wish these future music educators well and look forward to learning about their continued success in the future.

Tori Condra was elected by her peers across the state of Indiana to serve IMEA as a collegiate representative two years ago in January 2022. Tori has been responsible for coordinating professional development sessions for the Indiana Music Education Association (IMEA) Collegiate Night at the state conference and for the Leadership Conference held every September for NAfME Collegiate board members around the state. In their nomination letter, Chapter Advisor Laurie Williams; Rebecca Sorley, Chair of the Department of Music at the University of Indianapolis; and Chapter President Elizabeth Jones shared an example of when Tori pivoted quickly with a colleague when the guest speaker was unable to make it to their event due to unexpected weather delays. They collaborated to present a lively, well-organized, and memorable experience for all attending.

"She approaches every giving opportunity with her best attitude and musicianship, making her a teacher in high demand," shared Williams. "Not one to shrink from a challenge, Tori has opted to complete her student teaching this semester with a high school orchestra program. Though not a native string player, she has been taking viola lessons with me to prepare her for working with orchestra students."

Williams continues, "In service, Tori exemplifies altruism and passion for music education. She is an active participant in all NAfME Collegiate service opportunities, often initiating giving experiences for our students. She has been instrumental as a representative of our chapter through service in the department and the community." Williams, Sorley, and Jones also shared how Tori has blossomed as a teacher, from camp counseling and working with community youth on instrument repair, to student teaching from kindergarten through high school, private tutoring, and broadening her skills by learning string instruments.

Elizabeth (Ellie) Jones has served as University of Indianapolis NAfME Collegiate Chapter President 2023–2024, Vice President 2022–2023, and social media coordinator 2022–2024. She received the Mary Ann Dalton Music Education Award at the University of Indianapolis in April 2023, and she was recognized for her excellence at the Indiana Music Education Association conference in January 2024.

In their nominating letter Laurie Williams and Rebecca Sorley write: "Stepping into these positions [with the chapter] has taught her that the key to good leadership is in elevating others. She has learned to delegate tasks to other members so that they feel included and accomplished. She consistently upholds an attitude of kindness and thoughtfulness in her interpersonal interactions, in an effort to make others feel seen and supported. She carries herself with a balance of professionalism and joy, hoping to inspire others to put their best foot forward in all that they do because they love success, not because they feel obligated to do so. She strongly believes that this is what makes a good leader and good music educator. These character traits are what future students will use to model their behavior if this is what they see every day."

"In a new move for our chapter," Williams and Sorley continue, "Ellie opened our monthly chapter meetings to local high school music students, sharing invitations with area teachers and their students. This is an effort to 1) recruit more musicians to use their skills in a field that needs resilient and passionate workers and 2) encourage our chapter members to take on an attitude of mentorship to young musicians. She is passionate that mentorship and community are two of the reasons that many of us love music in the first place; it is important that we make sure young musicians have these experiences, too."

Among Ellie's other accomplishments and service are volunteering as an ISSMA judge for an underserved school district each spring; acting as section leader and accompanist for the university's large choral ensemble and chamber choir; and self-conducting rehearsals in small duos and trios through her involvement with performance groups such as piano ensemble, collaborative piano, and chamber instrumental ensembles. Further, her regular work at local middle and high schools and as a private teacher has well-prepared her for her near-future profession as a music educator. Additionally, Ellie is a ballroom dance instructor for students in elementary school to adult. "She feels that the ability to use dance to teach elements of rhythm, phrasing, coordination, musicality, and culture is invaluable to a future music educator and their students," shared Williams and Sorley.

Learn about past recipients of the Shannon Kelly Kane Scholarship, NAfME Collegiate Chapter of Excellence Recognition, and NAfME Collegiate Professional Achievement Awards. To learn more about the NAfME Collegiate program, visit nafme.org/membership/collegiate.

The National Association for Music Education (NAfME) is a collaborative community that supports music educators and advocates for equitable access to music education. The only association that addresses all aspects of music education, NAfME, together with its affiliated state music education associations, advocates at the national, state, and local levels and provides resources and opportunities for teachers, students, parents, and administrators. Founded in 1907 and representing more than 57,000 members teaching millions of students, NAfME advances the music education profession and promotes lifelong experiences in music.

Follow NAfME on Facebook (facebook.com/nafme), Instagram (instagram.com/nafme), and Twitter (twitter.com/nafme). For additional information, contact Catherina Hurlburt at catherinah@nafme.org or 703-860-4000.