Music moves the community

The latest U.S. News and World Report rankings of “America’s Best Colleges” list Wake Forest as 12th among schools where the faculty has an unusual commitment to undergraduate teaching.

borwickMusic professor Susan Borwick is one example of this commitment to teaching and learning. Last year, Borwick re-imagined her course in American music—jettisoning some of the more traditional classroom elements to make room for public-engagement projects. Her students worked to bring music and art to the Winston-Salem community. Some examples: designing games for children and families at The Special Children’s School, providing music workshops at Brookridge Retirement Center, and teaching music at the Children’s Home.

Borwick, who was awarded the Wake Forest Teaching Innovation Award for 2009-2010 and the Donald O. Schoonmaker Faculty Award for Community Service, says the arts are a direct link between Wake Forest and the community, and that faculty are not only encouraged to include outside-the-classroom learning into their courses, but provided with resources to make it happen. “For students to experience how music builds human connections is to make the class relevant to life today,” Borwick says.

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