Seniors aspire for artistic colleges

Liza Magill, Staff Writer

Ashley Valentine has always known that she wanted to pursue vocal performing arts. This dream has recently become reality for the senior, as she began the audition process for numerous prestigious conservatories and performing arts colleges, such as the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. She and other seniors, Jarred Tomlinson and Alex Robbins, anticipate their future in the unpredictable yet rewarding field of the arts.

While most seniors choose to work toward a traditional career path, students pursuing the arts have worked towards this passion since they were young. “I’ve always had a love and a passion for music. I’ve wanted to be a musician for as long as I can remember, so there’s really only one option in my mind as far as what I want to spend the rest of my life doing,” said Tomlinson.

Although this seems to make the college decision process easier, numerous auditions and an intense application process are required for arts programs at many colleges. For singers––like Valentine––this includes sending in preliminary pre-screening tapes and auditioning live for the schools after the first cut. “I have applied to eight schools, all conservatories and performing arts schools,” said Valentine. “I passed the pre-screenings in all eight schools and am now in the process of live auditioning…I would be so excited to be accepted into any of these wonderful schools.”

Just as Valentine emphasizes the need for prestigious schooling to further her singing prowess, Robbins recognizes that to break into the fashion industry he must study in the epicenter of fashion design––New York City. “I’ve applied to the Parsons New School for Design, Pratt Institute, and School of Visual Arts in Manhattan,” said Robbins. “New York is just the place to go for fashion.”

Even though their desired career paths seem unpredictable, all of the students agreed that the support of their family and friends have encouraged them to reach for their dreams. “People seem generally supportive when I tell them that I am pursuing a career in opera and vocal performance,” said Valentine. “My mom has been especially encouraging; she has supported me in my musical career path for my whole life, which is something that I am incredibly grateful for.”

However, college is not the only option for those hoping to find success in the arts. Tomlinson hopes that experience as a musician will help him find his break in the industry. “I currently have a couple of opportunities to travel and to play music in Zurich, London, and Australia,” said Tomlinson.

Although starting off small, each arts-lover wants to fulfill their dreams of doing well and having fun within the arts industry. “My dream job would be to work for Marc Jacobs in New York in their marketing department,” said Robbins.