Spring 2024 MECA
Continuing Education Courses
Percussion for the Non-Percussionist: Snare Drum
Need to brush up on those snare skills? This course offers in-depth methods of teaching snare drum from day one, with a focus on transferable skills that can organically create a foundation for well-rounded percussionists. A detailed sequence will be provided to give you the skills you need to start your percussionists on on the right foot (or stick).
All chats will be recorded. Attendance is voluntary but encouraged. Students should be ready to play during live sessions.
*Chat sessions are strongly recommended. but not required
*Students enrolled in the MMEd degree program at VanderCook may register for this course at the 500-level through the student portal. Please contact Dean Sinclair at [email protected] if academic advising is needed.
Learning Platform Information (Online Courses Only)
Schoology is a learning management system that allows you to interact directly with your instructors, fellow students, and members of the greater VanderCook community.
The evening before your class begins, be on the lookout for an email from Schoology with log-in instructions. Once you receive credentials, visit www.online.vandercook.edu 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 www.schoology.com
Please see specific software/hardware requirements in the course description.
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).
Director of Percussion Studies
James Yakas is currently the Director of Percussion Studies at VanderCook College of Music in Chicago, IL. He holds a B.M. in Music Education from the University of North Texas, a M.M. in Percussion Performance and Pedagogy from Northern Illinois University as well as a Doctoral of Musical Arts in Percussion Performance degree from the University of North Texas.
Dr. Yakas’ diversity in percussion education and performance has led him to many unique opportunities. He spent a total of twelve summers in the drum corps activity spanning from performing as a snare drummer with the Madison Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps to eventually becoming their Percussion Coordinator and Arranger in 2003. Dr. Yakas has also studied and performed the music of many world cultures including performances with Northern Illinois University’s Steel Band at the World Steelband Festival in Trinidad/Tobago and the Seoul Drum Festival in Seoul, South Korea; Studying Afro-Cuban Drumming with Orlando Cotto and Studying abroad in Ghana with Ethnomusicologist Dr. Steven Friedson, specifically the Ewe Culture of the Volta region.
Dr. Yakas is an endorser of Yamaha Percussion, Vic Firth Sticks and Mallets, Remo Drumheads and World Percussion Instruments and Sabian Cymbals.