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Music Scholarship Opportunities

Sister Monica Laughlin Music Ensemble Scholarship

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Important COVID-19 Update: All scholarship interviews will be held online in spring 2021, rather than on campus. 

We are not asking students to perform an audition live over Zoom this year. The submission of a video recorded performance serves as the musical audition portion of your application. Music faculty will listen to these recordings prior to meeting with students on Zoom for interviews.

About the Scholarship

The Sister Monica Laughlin Music Ensemble Scholarship auditions are open to students in all majors at the College who sing or play in choir, band, or orchestra. Students may receive up to $16,000 over four years (up to $4,000 per academic year) for participating in music ensembles. A student's award is determined by the members of the Music Department faculty following the student's submission of an audition recording and a live interview with the music faculty (held on Zoom in 2021). The scholarship is automatically renewed each semester for a student who:

  • Continues to participate in his or her scholarship music ensemble (band, choir, or orchestra)
  • Is recommended by the director
  • Makes satisfactory academic progress as defined in the College catalog, and
  • Maintains full-time student status at CSS

Music scholarships can only be offered to students who have been accepted to The College of St. Scholastica. 

The combined amount of scholarships and grants offered by the institution cannot exceed the cost of tuition. Music scholarships cannot be used toward room and board.

Students who audition early in the scholarship process (in February or March) may not receive notification of a music scholarship until after the Financial Aid Office has created an initial financial aid package. Students who are awarded full tuition scholarships or grants through this financial aid process are ineligible for additional music scholarships, even if they have already completed the audition process.

If you have questions or concerns, please contact the Music Department or the Financial Aid Office before you submit an application.

Interview Dates

Interview dates for students entering college in Fall 2021 are listed below. We encourage students to apply early, even if you plan to complete your interview at a later date and are still working on your audition recordings.

  • Saturday, March 6. Apply by February 27.
  • Saturday, March 27. Apply by March 20.
  • Sunday, April 11. Apply by April 4.
  • Saturday, April 24. Apply by April 17.
  • Saturday, May 8. Apply by May 1.
  • UPDATE: We have additional scholarships available and are extending auditions through the end of May 2021. Additional interview dates will be arranged as needed. Apply today!

How to Apply

  1. Submit the application form found at this link. Submit the form at least 7 days in advance of the date you wish to interview.
  2. On the application, provide the name and contact information of your current high school music ensemble director. Contact your director and request that they submit the recommendation form (automatically emailed to them when you apply) at least 7 days in advance of the date you wish to audition. You can also find the recommendation form at this link.

How to Audition

  1. Choose 1-2 pieces to perform and record. If you're not sure what to submit, see the Frequently Asked Questions page.
  2. If your audition piece requires piano accompaniment, you have several options. A) you may have an accompanist performing with you in the room while you record (please practice safe physical distancing!), B) you may use a recorded accompaniment track that you already have access to or that someone in your community creates for you, and that you play on a device while you record or C) you may email a copy of your music to staff accompanist Emily Valine at, and she will create an accompaniment recording for you to use. Please allow at least 10-14 days to receive your recording before the date you plan to record.
  3. Submit a video recorded performance.  You may submit your recording as a link directly in your application, or you can submit it via email later to Emily Valine. More info about how to create a good video is found on the Frequently Asked Questions page.

How to Interview

  1. Once the Music Department faculty and staff have reviewed your full application, you will be notified by email if you are being invited to an interview via Zoom videoconference. This email contains a link to a form to fill out. On this form, you'll be able to let us know your scheduling availability for the interview day. Submit this form as soon as possible, at least 1 week in advance of your interview date.
  2. Once all scheduling forms have been received from students interviwing on that date, you'll receive another email with confirmation of your official interview time. This email will also contain a link to a Zoom meeting and instructions on how to download and use Zoom, if you are not familiar with it. You'll receive your scheduled time and Zoom link 5-6 days before the interview date. 

  3. Plan to join the Zoom meeting 5-15 minutes early before your scheduled time. You will be sent to a virtual "waiting room" until the previous student has finished their interview, then you will be admitted to the Zoom meeting with the music faculty. During your 10-minute time slot, the Music Faculty will introduce themselves and ask you some questions about your musical interests and experience, your college plans, and anything else you'd like to share. You may also ask them any questions you have about the scholarship, music at CSS, or anything else! For more information, see the Frequently Asked Questions for Online Auditions page. 

We are here for you!

The CSS Music Department faculty and staff understand that there remain many uncertainties and unknowns due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We care about you feeling great about your audition experience and are creating accommodations to help you do your best during this time and in this format while practicing measures of health safety. 

If you have questions or concerns about the online audition and interview process, such as internet access limitations, unfamiliarity with Zoom, or lack of access to needed instruments, please let us know, and we are ready to work with you on alternate solutions for your audition. The sooner we know about any challenges you may be facing with this new audition format, the more effectively we can help you navigate the situation and find a solution that works for you.

About Sister Monica Laughlin

Frequently Asked Questions for Online Auditions

Music Lesson Scholarship

Music Lesson Scholarships are available for Music majors and minors to pay for private lessons on a major instrument or voice. These scholarships are given in addition to other aid offered through the Financial Aid Office. If you have questions or would like to be considered for the Music Lesson Scholarship, or if you are interested in pursuing a Music major or minor, contact Dr. Jeremy Craycraft at 218-723-7021 or