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Summer 2022 MECA

Continuing Education Courses


The Broad and Diverse Repertoire of Living Composers


June 6-July 31, 2022

Course Code



3 Graduate Credits


$1,065, due in full with registration


This class is a targeted study of the broad and diverse repertoire of living composers from all backgrounds and walks of life.  In addition to programming works from the traditional Western musical canon, it is important for public school music to represent everyone in contemporary society and reflect the truths of all students and their communities.

This class will meet virtually on Mondays and Thursdays from 11am-12:30pm and feature a different composer each week. Mondays, we will study the music of the featured composer. Thursdays, we will meet with the composer. Giovanni Santos and Alex Shapiro are just two of the composers participating in this class. The full roster of composers will be announced soon.

Schedule of Composers

June 9  Introduction Class

June 16 Gio Santos

June 23 Gary Kuo

June 30 Alex Shapiro

July 7 Willie Owens

July 14 Kevin Day

July 21 Cait Nashnamira




Chat Session

Mondays and Thursdays from 11am-12:30pm



Required Text(s)


Software/Hardware Requirements

Schoology is a learning management system that allows you to interact directly with your instructors, fellow students, and members of the greater VanderCook community.

Soon after you register, be on the lookout for an email from Schoology with log-in instructions. Once you receive credentials, visit to login. 

Some courses have specific online chat meeting times (please see course descriptions), while others have a flexible meeting schedule. You can expect all courses to meet together in a live online chat. If a live meeting time doesn’t work, you can work with your instructor to make other arrangements.

More information about Schoology can be found at

Online course grades are available within two weeks of the course(s) completion.  If you need a transcript, please CLICK HERE to access the online transcript request form. For a faster turnaround time, please submit the transcript request to the registrar prior to the end of your course(s).


Chip Staley Headshot 10 28 17.jpg

Charles "Chip" Staley

Charles “Chip” Staley directs the Wind Symphony and is a member of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) leadership team at the Merit School of Music in Chicago. Staley is also the Founder and President of ARTSpeaks, a non-profit arts advocacy organization and teaches graduate coursework at the VanderCook College of Music. Staley began his career at Eisenhower High School in Blue Island, Illinois, before moving to Naperville, Illinois to teach at Waubonsie Valley High school. Staley transferred to Neuqua Valley High School when it opened, serving as Department Chair and teaching the Wind Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra, Jazz Ensemble and Marching Band before retiring from public school teaching. Under his leadership, Neuqua Valley High School was twice recognized by the GRAMMY® Foundation as the National GRAMMY® Signature School and was awarded the 2009 John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts National Schools of Distinction in Arts Education Award. Staley’s bands and orchestras have performed at the Midwest Clinic, Chicago’s Orchestra Hall, and at venues in the People’s Republic of China, England, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Spain, Hungary and the Czech Republic. Staley has conducted the ILMEA All-State Band and maintains an active schedule as a keynote speaker, clinician and conductor. Most recently, the Merit School of Music Wind Symphony performed at the ILMEA Conference and shared a concert with the University of Illinois Wind Symphony in Foellinger Great Hall.
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The mission of VanderCook College of Music is to enrich the lives of present and future generations by developing uniquely skilled music teachers who exhibit strong character, professionalism, and a commitment to excellence.

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