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String Project - California State University, Sacramento

General Information:

The CSUS String Project is the flagship program of this kind in the West and a member of the National String Project Consortium. We provide carefully structured group lessons in violin and cello for children in the fourth grade and up.  The lessons are taught by the dedicated and talented CSUS School of Music undergraduate and graduate teachers and supervised by experienced teachers. Lessons are available at affordable prices due to the generous support of The Sacramento State Associated Students, String Letter Publishing, Associated Students Inc. (ASI), the Robla School District, Twin Rivers School District and the National String Project Consortium. The Teichert and Heller Foundations have given support in previous years.

Our mission is to:

  • Create a partnership by providing accessible string education and mentorship for the community and teaching experience for CSUS School of Music students who may be pursuing a career in string education. 

  • Provide our students with an opportunity for musical enjoyment and education through the study of stringed instruments.
  • Encourage the personal development of our students by providing them with an outlet for self expression within a structured environment.

  • Encourage student leadership in school orchestra programs and share our accomplishments within the community, acting as a supplement to the current string programs in the school systems, or as a substitute string program for children who do not have access through their school.

    The Program:

The String Project currently offers large group classes at different levels: beginners, intermediate and orchestra. An important aspect of the program is that students are charged affordable fees in order to make the program available to children who might not otherwise have access.

The Fall 2016 fee of $110 includes a semester of two weekly classes.

Beginning students are offered either violin or cello in classes which meet Monday, Wednesday from 4:45 to 5:35 in rooms 227 in Capistrano Hall on the CSU Sacramento campus. Students with the level necessary to play in the orchestra may play violin, viola, cello or bass. Parents are encouraged to attend classes whenever possible. Parents of the third graders with special permission to register are required to attend classes. Students need to provide their own instruments. Information about obtaining an instrument is given at registration. Please do not buy an instrument until we have sized your child. Purchased instruments must meet the approval of the Master Teachers. Students do not "age out" of our String Project. If they would like to continue to attend, we welcome them.

String Project students typically follow this progression:

violinbeginner beginnercellos2016intermediate violins
2016 - Beginning Violins -------- 2016 Beginning Cellists ------------------------------ 2016 Intermediate Room

The beginning students in the String Project are fourth through 8th graders from schools in the Sacramento area. During their first year, these students learn the basics of string playing in a heterogeneousor homogeneous class of approximately fifteen to fifty students. During the school year students can pre-register and be put on a waiting list for the beginner's class which starts in September of every year. From May-August, interested students should send in the registration forms found on the registration page. Students are accepted on a first come-first served basis with children already on the waiting list given priority.

Once registered for the large group/orchestra classes, optional individual lessons are available for an additional fee. These classes are scheduled from 5:45-6:35 on Monday and Wednesday on a space available basis. More information is available on the registration page.


2nd year and up
Students are grouped in a heterogeneous group to create an orchestral experience. Occassionally some students are taken out of the large orchestra to work in a smaller chamber orchestra setting.

Optional individual lessons are available for an additional fee on a first-come-first-served basis. These classes are scheduled from 5:45-6:35 on Monday and Wednesday on a space available basis. These additional lesson possibilities are highly recommended in order to help the students achieve their potential. More information is available on the registration page.

Students in the String Project Orchestra have two major performing opportunities. In December and May the String Project presents major concerts in the Capistrano Hall's Recital Hall for an overflowing, enthusiastic audience. All students join together for this presentation.

In the summer we encourage the students to contact one of the apprentice teachers to further their study on an individual basis. Recitals are possible.

Mission of California State University , Sacramento String Project:

The String Project is a quintessential model of service-learning. It allows undergraduate and graduate students to learn new skills, to think critically, and to test their roles as professionals while offering low cost instruction in stringed instruments to children from the community. Since 2001, the String Project has been training students and teachers in the joys of playing and teaching stringed instruments.

The String Project allows future graduates to refine their teaching skills while still in school. There is currently a documented shortage of qualified string teachers. College students who graduate from the String Project will arrive at these jobs confident and well prepared to be effective teachers. Given that 67% of the nation's children are exposed to music instruction through school programs, it is imperative to fill these jobs with qualified teachers. The String Project endeavors to provide quality instruction to children of all social strata.

Read more about this national program at the
National String Project Consortium web site.