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Why McKendree?

Focus on individual learning opportunities and hands-on experience.

Teaching opportunities:

Summer Junior High Concert Band Camp

Summer Choir Camp

Conducting university ensembles in rehearsal and performance

Special events:

Trips to St. Louis Symphony Performances

Guest Masterclasses and Residencies including Grammy Award-winning soprano, Christine Brewer

Educational Retreats

Regional Performance Opportunities





Why a Degree in Music?

The Bachelor of Arts in Music is an engaging degree program designed to prepare you for a career in music performance, education, theatre, and many other fields in the arts and humanities. Our talented faculty and small class sizes give you the one-on-one guidance you need to grow your skills in music. Scholarship opportunities abound for music students, and our long list of performance ensembles gives you the chance to get involved on campus while enhancing your talents and experience.

Click here for information regarding a degree in Music Education.



Photo of Holman LibraryAbout the Music Major

Housed in the Division of Visual and Performing Arts, the Music degree offers you many different ways to personalize your degree to fit your own unique interests and passions. Students may earn a BA in music and have the option to choose one of two distinct areas of emphasis for more experience in the area of music that best suits your particular talents.

  • Classical Performance Emphasis: Available for students of piano, organ, voice, brass, woodwind, or percussion instruments.

  • Jazz Performance Emphasis: Available for students of trumpet, trombone, saxophone, guitar, or string bass.

2023-2024 Program Catalog




Minor in Music

The Music minor is offered to students who choose to major in a different field, but would still like to incorporate music in their curriculum. It is available to all majors and includes classes in music theory, conducting, and applied lessons.

Music Minor Requirements



Performances Ensembles

Our Music program boasts many outstanding and diverse performance ensembles, giving you the opportunity to earn scholarship funds, meet lifelong friends, and have fun showcasing McKendree’s musical talent.

  • Concert Band

  • Wind Ensemble
  • Concert Choir
  • Chamber Choir
  • Jazz Ensemble
  • Jazz Combo
  • Percussion Ensemble

  • Spirit of McKendree



Photo of McKendree's Entryway MonumentWhy McKendree?

McKendree University provides you with interactive learning opportunities through our small class sizes, experienced faculty, and unique internship experiences that move you beyond the classroom. We are committed to your success in the degree programs we offer, the internships and extracurricular activities that will set you apart, and the college experience you will receive at McKendree. Just 25 minutes from downtown St. Louis, Missouri, McKendree University is located in historic Lebanon, Illinois, and affords students a host of enriching cultural, career, and entertainment opportunities.



Program Highlights


  • Two unique degree tracks in Classical Performance, and Jazz Performance give you the opportunity to shape your coursework to fit your career goals.

  • Music minor gives you the tools to perform and study music while majoring in another related field.

  • More than 10 different performance ensembles in everything from bands to choirs enable you to make lasting memories doing what you love while earning scholarship funds.

  • The Hettenhausen Center for the Arts: Opened in 2006, the Hett gives music students an impressive venue to demonstrate their talents to audiences. Perform in this state-of-the-art theater that hosts countless professional dancers, musicians, and actors from around the world.




Employment Opportunities

Music majors find employment in a number of careers, including performance, composing, and teaching. Our graduates work as orchestral musicians, professional singers and instrumentalists, church music directors, and teachers in their own studios.




Interesting Courses


  • Introduction to Conducting

  • History of Jazz

  • History of Music

  • Performance Labs




Club Information / Honor Societies


  • Kappa Kappa Psi (National Honorary Band Fraternity)

  • National Association for Music Education




Related Programs





Your Student Success Support Team





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Key Faculty

Photo of Nancy Ypma, D.Mus.Nancy Ypma, D.Mus.

Chair of the Division of Visual & Performing Arts and Humanities
Professor of Music
Hettenhausen Center for the Arts
(618) 537-6922 

Photo of Jennifer Moder-Bell, Ph.D.Jennifer Moder-Bell, IPhD

Associate Professor of Music Education
Director of Bands
Hettenhausen Center for the Arts 1092
(618) 537-6428



Full List of Music Department Faculty & Staff