San Juan Hills High School choir director, Michael Ushino, is elated this week, as he has become the recipient of a $5,000 grant from the Orange County Community Foundation for the SJHHS choir program. As he has continued to grow the choral music program in the past couple of years, Ushino realized a greater need for training to enhance the musical learning of his students. Private voice lessons are expensive, so he came up with the idea of helping students by hiring vocal coaches and subsidizing the cost for the choral students. Last year, Ushino started a Vocal Music Scholarship in the program in order to help his students with financial need get voice lessons that they can afford. However, funds were limited, so he began writing grant requests to local organizations to try to find additional funding.
Last week, Ushino was contacted by the Orange County Community Foundation and was told that the choir was given a $5,000 grant funded by the Robert and Doreen Marshall Fund for Dramatic Arts and Classical Music. This particular fund supports opera, choral, and symphonic performances, dramatic arts performance groups, and arts education. The choir will be able to use the grant to help cover the cost of voice lessons for students who wish to extend their learning and work on perfecting their craft outside the classroom. Ushino is really excited for the opportunity to help his students learn and grow while making great music!