Bob Jones Memorial Music Scholarships
Bob Jones graduated from Stephen Decatur High School in 1946. He placed great value upon his musical training in the Decatur schools and it was his wish to pass the joy of music on to talented Decatur youth.
Margaret Fassnacht Memorial Piano Scholarship
This scholarship is awarded to piano students grades 9-11 who have demonstrated outstanding musicianship and piano skills. Margaret Fassnacht was a pianist and music coordinator in the Decatur Public Schools from 1943-1970. She left a legacy of excellence in developing music education curriculum during her tenure in District #61.
Marilyn Mertz Piano Scholarship
This scholarship is awarded to a developing young pianist in grades 6-8. Marilyn Mertz served on the Symphony Guild board for 25 years, most recently as vice president responsible for music education activities and opportunities for area youth. She was the District #61 music coordinator from 1986-1996, and instituted a nationally recognized mobile piano keyboard curriculum in the Decatur Schools that served third and fourth graders for 15 years.
Fombelle Sisters Woodwind Scholarship
The Fombelle family is proud to sponsor a private lesson scholarship in honor of their daughters Corinne, a saxophonist, and Victoria, an oboist. Both sisters are past DYSO members and recipients of MDSO Scholarships and trace their musical success back to their private lessons with Dr. Perry Rask and Professor Tina Nicholson through the Millikin Prep Dept. Victoria will graduate with a degree in oboe performance from the Eastman School of Music and Corinne studies saxophone performance at Vanderbilt’s Blair School of Music. The Fombelles want to provide promising young woodwind artists the opportunity to grow in talent, passion, and dedication through individual private lessons with a Millikin professor.
Marge Tower Memorial Viola Scholarship
Marge Tower was an elementary school teacher and she believed all children should have music in their lives. As a music lover, she celebrated hundreds of concerts “maestroed” by her husband, Dr. Wes Tower, who was Dean of the Millikin School of Music (1981-1995) and MDSO maestro (1983-1996).
Marge held degrees from Depauw University and Vanderbilt University’s Peabody College and taught at Baum and Washington Schools. She was a patroness of Sigma Alpha Iota music fraternity and it is only fitting that the rehearsal hall in Kirkland Fine Arts Center is named for Marge and Wes Tower. First you have to believe in practice.
Dean and Dottie Butts Memorial Camp Scholarship
This scholarship was established many years ago by Dottie Butts who was a long-time member of the Symphony Guild Board of Directors. She and her husband, Dean, loved orchestral music, and wanted to continue music opportunities for young musicians by establishing this annual camp scholarship.
Margaret Foley Music Camp Scholarship
Margaret Foley shared her lovely singing voice in school and in her church choir. In later years, she enjoyed attending MDSO concerts. In keeping with her life-long love of music, Margaret Foley named the Symphony Orchestra Guild of Decatur in her will. Her bequest, received in 2014, provides the funds for this annual camp scholarship.
Marilyn Mertz Music Camp Scholarship
Marilyn Mertz served on the Symphony Guild board for 25 years, most recently as vice president responsible for music education. Under her guidance, the guild increased funding for music scholarships and musical opportunities, such as the PASS concerts for local elementary school students and Decatur Youth Symphony Orchestra. Marilyn also served as DPS 61 music coordinator from 1986-1996.
Through these scholarships the lives of our promising young musicians become richer. In return, the recipients help to ensure the continuance of symphonic music in the future. If you would like to honor a loved on by creating a music camp or private lesson scholarship, contact Marilyn Mertz, Guild Vice President for Education, at 217-429-0992. Donated scholarships are tax deductible.