Northshore School of the Arts application deadline extended to Aug. 15
Contact: Christina Chapple
(1) ONE-ON-ONE INSTRUCTION -- Richard Schwartz, left, saxophone instructor and director of jazz studies with the Southeastern Louisiana University Department of Music and Dramatic Arts, guides Ryan Miller of Slidell in one of Miller’s weekly lessons through the Northshore School of the Arts.
(2) SHINING LIGHT ON ART -- Southeastern art instructor Kelly Mueller, center, explains light and shadows for St. Tammany Parish art students K.C. Stockard, left, and Jennifer Spearman, right, at a Northshore School of the Arts class held at Fontainebleau High School in Mandeville.
HAMMOND – High school juniors and seniors gifted in the performing and visual arts can hone their talents this fall – and earn college credit – by enrolling in the Northshore School of the Arts.
Through the new after school program, which debuted last spring, students from St. Tammany, Tangipahoa and Livingston parishes can take courses in music, visual art and dance and receive one-on-one lessons in applied voice and music, said Bryan DePoy, assistant dean of the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences who is serving as the school’s interim director.
Classes will be offered on Southeastern’s main campus in Hammond and at the university’s St. Tammany Center, located in the parish government complex on Koop Drive, north of Mandeville, DePoy said.
“The Northshore School of Arts is a prime example of collaboration between a university and school district,” he said. “This program challenges students with more advanced and intensive course work than the typical high school offering. These courses are not watered down college courses. They are the classes as taught at Southeastern to college-level students. Students are given the opportunity to nurture their artistic talent with some of the finest artist/teachers in their respective fields.”
DePoy said students have until August 15 to apply. The cost for admitted juniors and seniors is $200 per class, plus a $20 application fee. There may be additional fees for textbook rentals and art supplies.
“Students who complete Northshore School of the Arts classes with a minimum of C-level work and meet any other academic departmental requirements will be awarded credit upon enrollment at Southeastern,” DePoy said.
Last spring, approximately 40 St. Tammany students participated in the Northshore School of the Arts’ first semester through Southeastern's collaborative agreement with St. Tammany Parish Schools. The students took classes in art history, basic drawing, introduction to music, and music theory.
“Basically, this is a ‘school without walls,’” said Tammy Bourg, dean of the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences. “Our Community Music School serves as the model for this project, which we anticipate expanding to other school systems next year.”
“We have been wanting to have opportunities for students to take their talents to the next level,” said St. Tammany Superintendent Gayle Sloan. “This partnership allows us to do that while not duplicating what’s being done at the university level. It is a partnership that is the best of both worlds.”
The Northshore School of the Arts, added Southeastern President Randy Moffett, “is an example of how a university and a public school system can work together to enrich educational opportunities, lives and quality of life. This is the beginning – and I think the best is in front of us. We’re certain that the new partnership will not only provide the means for talented high school students to reach higher artistic accomplishments, but also influence them to consider Southeastern as their future home.”
“I really can’t emphasize enough the importance of the arts in education,” said music instructor Andrew Seigel, who coached two St. Tammany students in clarinet studies. “And while it’s important to have teachers with the energy to teach students, perhaps even more important to making something with lasting power is development of a framework to connect students with teachers. This program allows for that kind of connection and, I believe, will flourish as a result.”
For Salmen High School student Ryan Miller, who has been playing the saxophone since fifth grade, the opportunity to study one-on-one with an accomplished musician such as Richard Schwartz was exciting.
“Mr. Schwartz is a great teacher who gets really involved in his work,” Miller said. “Before this, I just got lessons in band practice. With this one-on-one work, you can concentrate much better while getting a lot more individual attention than you can ever get in band practice.”
Motivated, enthusiastic and interested is how art instructor Kelly Mueller described her drawing class held at Fontainebleau High School. “I enjoyed it tremendously and believe the students did as well,” she said.
Drawing student Jennifer Spearman said she spent about eight hours a week outside of class on her assignments, but that the extra effort was rewarding. “It’s been a lot of fun,” said the Fontainebleau High senior, who plans to major in mathematics when she enrolls at Southeastern in the fall.
At a semester-ending reception and concert at Southeastern’s Contemporary Arts Center, Fontainebleau High senior Michael Mullins proudly showed his parents the charcoal drawings he had created in Mueller’s class.
“When my art teacher handed out a flyer, I thought, ‘So I get to take this really awesome class and, when I go to Southeastern, instead of taking freshman classes, I get to start with sophomore level drawing classes?’ I jumped at the opportunity and it’s been really great,” said Mullins, who wants to major in art at Southeastern.
“The teacher was awesome,” he added. “I learned a good bit about myself and my art. I had never used charcoal before, and now I love using it. I thought that I was completely an abstract artist, but I learned that I do pretty well with realism.”
For Northshore School of the Arts application information, contact DePoy at (985) 549-2101 or write to the Northshore School of the Arts, SLU 10767, Southeastern Louisiana University, Hammond, LA 70402.