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UMM music majors honored by national education group

University of Minnesota, Morris music majors Donovan Hanson, Matthew Torgerson and Alexandra Weber were honored by the Music Educators' National Organization with its prestigious Professional Achievement Award.

All three students have been involved in the leadership of the Morris chapter of the professional organization, as its president, vice president, and secretary.

MENC distinguished these three outstanding members for exemplary chapter activities and member achievements, serving as role models for other collegiate chapters, and recognizing their contributions to the music education profession.

The award recipients' achievements include, the organization and leadership of field trips to the Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago and to the Minnesota Music Educators' Association's Midwinter Clinic in Minneapolis, as well as the inauguration of a new presentation series on the Morris campus.

Weber, the current president of Morris's chapter of MENC, said the students are honored to receive the award.

"Donovan, Matt, and I were trying our hardest to make MENC a more noticeable organization on campus, and we took giant steps towards that goal," Weber said.

"This year MENC is trying to continue that forward motion by hosting speakers, going to the MMEA conference in the spring, and other activities," Weber said. "Receiving this award helps with the motivation to keep up the hard work and to make MENC even better here on campus."

Martin Seggelke, assistant professor of music and adviser of Morris's chapter of MENC, said the award was well-deserved.

"They have exhibited exceptional leadership skills, along with excellent organizational talents," Seggelke said. "They have invested a lot of time and committed work, and they certainly are most deserving of this recognition."

The MENC Professional Achievement recognition distinguishes individual collegiate members for their commitment and dedication to MENC and music education. This recognition is given to collegiate members who have served their chapters in an exemplary manner. In addition, current and prior enrollment in an active MENC collegiate chapter for at least two years and an overall minimum grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale are among the required criteria.

MENC, among the world's largest arts education organizations, marked its centennial in 2007 as the only association that addresses all aspects of music education. Through membership of more than 75,000 music teachers, and with 60,000 honor students and supporters, MENC serves millions of students nationwide through activities at all teaching levels, from preschool to graduate school.