Musicians Mobile

Student Spotlight- Rachael Achieves Scholarships!

Saratoga, Calif., June 7, 2013 Lynbrook High School senior, Musicians Mobile student and Saratoga resident Rachael Chambers embodies a vision of success. In a world growing in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) and dwindling in the arts, Rachael has defied the odds and not only been accepted into prestigious music schools around the country, but has also been offered scholarships to help her follow her dreams.

Rachael has recently accepted an offer from Mount Holyoke in South Hadley, Massachusetts, where she will be studying music and anthropology.

Since music is a field in college education that doesn’t currently generate a lot of “buzz,” we wanted to take the opportunity to talk with Rachael about her success in the arts and how other musicians, artists and thespians can also follow their passions and be successful in higher education.

1)    Rachael, your mother and grandmother are both in the sciences. You live in Silicon Valley. All of this points to a future for you in science. What led you, originally, to music?

As a child, I was never passionate about science. I liked it, I was relatively good at it, but it never created a spark. Music, for me, was more welcoming. I started noticing my love for singing at an early age, and it only increased as I joined choruses in school and learned more about it later in life. From there, I started taking lessons in guitar and voice from Musicians Mobile, where I had the opportunity to play in bands, support community events and have multiple musical experiences. All of this opened my eyes to the possibilities and realities of a future in music.

2)    What was the most challenging aspect of applying to college for music?

The most challenging aspect, for me, and maybe for any student, was having enough faith in myself that I could really follow my dreams. A lot of people asked me why I would go into music and often seemed confused that I didn’t choose a more “realistic” goal. However, I think that the arts are very real, and there are multiple opportunities for students who have different pursuits than what many consider to be safe.

3)    How have music lessons and musical experiences helped to prepare you for higher education?

So much of what higher education looks for is extra curricular activities, leadership and collaboration. With music, I have been involved in 17 groups, ranging from a band that plays for non-profit events and fundraisers, a barbershop club and seven choirs. With all of this, I have been given the opportunity to step up and be a leader. Music not only inspired me to get involved and push myself, but also helped me gain experiences in a variety of settings and roles.

4)    Who has been your biggest influence and support as you pursue your passion for the arts?

I wouldn’t say that any one person has been the biggest influence. With any dream, it takes the entire community to support you and help you learn and grow. My parents, family and teachers have all been tremendously supportive. Everyone sees that music is what makes me the happiest; so, they all support my dreams and desires.

5)    Many students take music lessons when they are young. However, many lose interest when things get challenging or other activities get in the way. What would you recommend to young students to help keep them motivated in their musical journey?

Everyone has to find his or her own way. Even I have given up on some of my musical pursuits along the way. The most important thing to remember is to work toward a specific goal, be it a performance or the ability to play a certain song. For me, the ultimate goal was to be able to have music with me wherever I am. I like being able to sing and pick up a guitar and have music with me all the time. Learning music can be really challenging, but if you keep a goal in mind, it makes the hard and tedious parts of learning more doable.

6)    Finally, what advice would you give other students who hope to follow their dreams in the arts?

Listen and learn as much as you can, but don’t let others take away from your experiences. Stay true to your goals and yourself. Don’t ever get discouraged. Be confident, try hard, work hard, get “out there” and opportunities will find you.


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