As the end of our inaugural year approaches, we’ve built a strong foundation in 2019, including the launch of our pilot program in the Highline School District, but there are many more mentoring opportunities and students we can benefit. Continued support will make these efforts possible, expanding the reach of our program and impacting even more students and school music programs across Western Washington.

Launching Our Pilot – Music Mentors Takes Flight!

Girls and boys playing trombones and tuba
Glacier Middle School low brass students make musical strides in their mentoring session

We have placed five music mentors in five schools across nine different band classes in the Highline School District over the past school year. The students and their band directors are experiencing the immediate benefit of this work.

Highline middle schools are in the first year of a realignment that has moved sixth graders into the middle school level. Because of this, music directors in these schools face the unique challenge of having both sixth and seventh grade band students at the beginning level. Our mentors are playing an important role in helping to develop and support learning of fundamental skills in these beginning students.

“My kids look forward to our mentor coming every week. They now know that it’s a time to ask questions, get help with a specialist, and receive more small-group time. Nelson is doing great work with my kids! They have made immense progress and I am thankful for this program.”

Stephanie Kuborssy | Band Director, Glacier Middle School

The contributions of one of our mentors, Nelson Bell, has had a marked impact on low brass students in two of these first-year band classrooms. He has been splitting his mentoring time between these classes at Glacier Middle School to reach more students taking their very first steps as they learn to play trombone, tuba, and baritone horn. Between the two classes, Nelson is working with a total of nine students. You can read more about Nelson in our Mentor Spotlight.

The feedback we’ve gotten on the work Nelson is doing has been outstanding; the students have connected with him and look forward to his visits. Stephanie Kuborssy, band director at Glacier Middle School, appreciates the additional support Nelson brings. “Our programs are just getting started,” she said, “but we’re already seeing the difference it’s making.”

Our mentors in the other Highline schools work with students on clarinet, oboe, saxophone, trumpet, and percussion, supporting those band programs in areas where the additional focus is making a big difference.

Your Donations Make A Difference

Every dollar makes a difference. A donation of $50 allows one music mentor to facilitate a single session; $1000 provides regular visits from a mentor to one school for an entire school year. Our goal for 2020: Increase the number of mentors we place in schools from our current number of nine classrooms to twenty-two, placing additional mentors in the Highline Schools District and as well as schools in other underserved areas of our community.

Impact the Lives of Young Musicians

Supporters of Northwest Music Mentors can impact our mission in several ways:

  • If your company offers matching funds for your charitable gifts (including volunteer hours), please be sure to donate to us through your work so that we can maximize your contribution. 
  • We hold fundraisers through Facebook several times a year; when you see us publish a fundraising campaign on social media consider sharing our fundraising page and inviting others to contribute.
  • You may donate through PayPal or send a check payable to Northwest Music Mentors any time of year.
  • Besides your donation, there are other ways you can support us, including hosting events or sharing our mission and vision with people you know. To learn more, read about Ways You Can Support Us.

We thank you for your consideration to include us as part of your personal giving plan, and we hope you’ll help us continue to make a difference with our young musicians.

With much gratitude,

Jim Cutler
Board President, Northwest Music Mentors