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Sacramento State Campus

FOCUS ON: String Project

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The Sacramento State String Project provides group lessons in violin and cello for children in the third grade and up. The lessons are taught by professor Judy Bossuat and students in the Music Department. The project allows future graduates to refine their teaching skills while providing a service to the community.

(Narrator:) This is “Focus” from the campus of Sacramento State.

(Paolo Reyes, Sacramento State music student:) “What’s actually surprising is how quickly they learn.”

(Jim Finnerty reporting:) Sacramento State Music Student Paolo Reyes is talking about a university service program giving elementary students a chance to learn the violin and cello.

(Reyes:) “I guess that’s the great thing about being a student teacher. You learn what to do next time. You learn what not to do.”

(Finnerty:) Called the String Project, university students get experience in teaching while youngsters develop their musical skills.

(Judy Weigert Bossuat:) “The kids come twice a week, Monday and Wednesday for a 50-minute class”

(Finnerty:) Judy Weigert Bossuat directs the program. It’s one of only 32 such programs in the nation and was the first of its kind in California. It serves youngsters from schools all across the capital region.

(Bossuat:) “We always start the beginners in the same room, and then after a year we usually graduate them to the orchestra.”

(Finnerty:) Many elementary students begin in third grade often having no previous musical experience.

(Bossuat:) It’s very satisfying when you can tell that they’ve really gotten something and we can see that the beginners in the class that I teach have improved a lot.”

(Voice:) “Ready Go....”

(Finnerty:) Katie Meindl is new to the program. Her mom also played the violin, but thinks the group approach fosters a musical community.

(Gabrielle Meindl parent:) “You also get a great sound that comes from a group that you don’t get on your own.”

(Finnerty:) Advancing to the orchestra in the second year, many students continue in the string project well into high school giving themselves and university students opportunities to improve.

(Bossuat:) “I think it’s a win-win situation for the community and for the school.”

(Finnerty:) This is Jim Finnerty reporting.

(Narrator:) For more information on this and other news from Sacramento State, visit our website.

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