Dorothy Knost Music Scholarships totaling $31,500 have been awarded to 10 Scioto County students for the 2019 – 2020 academic year. They include one senior, five sophomores and four freshmen who are pursuing degrees in music education or performance in colleges or universities in Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia and Missouri.
Drew Williams, a Portsmouth High School graduate who will enter his final year of college at Morehead State University in Kentucky this fall, is the lone senior Knost Music Scholarship recipient. He has received Knost Scholarships each of his four undergraduate collegiate years.
Named the “top junior student” in the Morehead State percussion studio last year, Williams is a member of the Morehead State marching, concert and symphony bands. A music education major, he hopes to teach in a nearby high school band program, perform with community bands and orchestras and help other musically inclined students after graduating from Morehead with a Bachelor of Music Degree. He also plans to pursue master’s and doctorate degrees and someday become a college professor of music.
Noah Lovins, a Portsmouth West High School graduate, is a sophomore at Webster University in St. Louis majoring in musical direction for musical theatre. A frequent rehearsal accompanist and conductor for PWHS musicals and co-creator of the Portsmouth Children’s Theatre’s original “Gold Rush” production in 2018, Lovins was an independent composer, arranger and keyboardist for Circus Harmony in St. Louis during his freshman year at Webster. After graduating from college, Lovins anticipates attending graduate school in musical theatre composition or going to work directly in the musical theatre industry in New York or London.
This summer Lovins is attending the annual International Music Academy in Mezzano, Italy, serving as an accompanist for two Broadway productions.
Otterbein College sophomore Sarah Simmons, a PHS graduate, is majoring in theatre performance with a minor in music and vocal performance. She aims to graduate with a BFA degree in Theatre Performance, develop her set design and technical skills, and eventually pursue a graduate degree. Simmons won a theatre design award at the prestigious Interlochen Music Camp in Michigan where she worked in the summer of 2018 and is currently performing in two shows at the Weathervane Playhouse in Newark, Ohio. She will also perform in two shows at Cedar Summerstock in Iowa in the second half of this summer. To date, she is a veteran of twenty-nine theatre productions including high school, community and college shows.
Micah Simmons, a PHS graduate who is now a sophomore at Balwin Wallace Conservatory of Music, is majoring in music composition and film studies. At Balwin Wallace he is active in the University and Bach Choirs and the New Music Series, as well as jazz and cappella ensembles. He is a member of the American Choral Directors, the Conservatory Student Council and Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity. Ultimately, Simmons wants to compose music for the film industry, work on film productions and compose for different combinations of instruments. He plans to continue his studies in graduate school to earn an advanced degree in composition and would like to teach and direct a high-quality choir in the future.
This summer Simmons is working with the Greater Cleveland Film Commission.
Portsmouth West High School graduate Alec Arnett, now a sophomore at Otterbein College, is also majoring in Music Education. At PWSH he took part in many musical activities including appearing as the Beast in “Beauty and the Beast.” He was named an “Outstanding Leader” in the Ohio Model UN, was a HOBY ambassador, participated in Buckeye Boys’ State and won an “Outstanding Witness Award in Mock Trial exercises. He also received the John Phillip Sousa Band Award. As a freshman at Otterbein he received the “Young Artist Award.”
Arnett plans to teach high school choir and drama in the future, but will be willing to teach any level of music.
Another graduate of Portsmouth West High School, Elizabeth Elrod will be a sophomore at Ohio University this fall, majoring in music therapy. At PWSH she was president of the band, choir, the school chapter of the Ohio Model of the UN and the thespian troupe. She was named a Model UN “Outstanding Leader,” volunteered with PAAC and PACT and for the Portsmouth Welcoming Committee, working with LGBTQ and support groups.
At OU, Elizabeth earned the highest GPA in her entire music class regardless of majors, two years in a row. She plans to become a certified music therapist and hopes to work at a recovery center helping drug addicts.
Sara Born, who graduated as valedictorian from Portsmouth High School in 2019, will head to Marshall University to major in Music Education in the fall. At PHS she was a member of the show choir and performed in four PHS musicals, including portraying the title role in “Cinderella.” She was named to National Honor Society, served as vice-president of her senior class and was a member of the all-county honors choir for four years and the Shawnee State University Choir for two years. She has taken dance training for 12 years and hopes to continue her musical and dance activities in order to perform every chance she gets. Her goal is to teach music and be the director of her own show choir.
A 2019 graduate and valedictorian of Minford High School, Mason Yeagle will attend Morehead State University to major in Music Education and minor in Computer Science. A member of the Minford concert, pep and marching bands, section leader and field commander, Yeagle plays the flute, piccolo and several other instruments. He won this year’s Scioto County Honors Music Festival Award and performed with the Scioto County District 17, Ohio University Honor Bands and the Portsmouth Wind Symphony. He was also a member of Minford High School’s Quiz Bowl and National Honor Society. He hopes to pursue a career as a teacher of both instrumental music and technology.
Minford High School graduate Aeriel Parker will attend Ohio University as a freshman Music Education major this fall. She was a four-year member of her high school choir and the All County Honors Choir, as well as member of National Honor, Student Council and the Encore Select Choir. She performed in four MHS musicals and was a scholar athlete. Her goal at OU after earning a Music Education major is to teach at the high school level and to direct a select choir and musicals.
Madalyn Hale, a 2019 graduate of Green High School, will attend Marshall University as a Music Education major. In high school she was a member of the marching and jazz band, the high school choir, the Marshall Honors Band, and the All-county and All-district Bands. She was also vice-president of Tri-Music Honorary Society and active in other organizations. Besides her goal to earn a Music Education degree, she would like to publish poems and poetry books she has created. She hopes to go to graduate school and obtain another degree in performance or composition.
“We are extremely proud of all these outstanding students and talented musicians,” said Kay Bouyack, chairperson of the Dorothy Knost Music Scholarship Committee. “We are very pleased that we have the resources to give them all sizable scholarships and to play a role in helping them achieve their career goals.”
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