Welcome and Mission

Welcome from the Director

The School of Music at Marshall University offers comprehensive academic programs that provide for varied musical interests and aspirations and prepare students for an evolving and diverse future as music professionals. Our world-class music faculty are exceptional performers, teachers, composers, and scholars who promote academic and artistic excellence in our students. Housed in Smith Music Hall and the Jomie Jazz Center, our facilities feature Smith Recital Hall, a 24–track recording studio, numerous rehearsal spaces, a music technology lab, as well as Smart classrooms, seminar rooms, faculty studios and practice rooms.  In addition, the Marching Thunder enjoys a large rehearsal room and offices in the Henderson Center athletic complex. 

We offer bachelor’s and master’s degrees in various emphasis areas such as music education, performance, jazz studies, theory/composition, music history and literature, commercial music, musical theatre, and general music studies. Graduates of our school enjoy careers in reputable academic and performance positions and are musical leaders of the 21st century.

A unique service that benefits students in the College of Arts & Media and the School of Music is the Center for Wellness in the Arts, where performing artists can be evaluated by licensed athletic trainers, skilled vocal and hearing clinicians, dietitians, exercise physiologists and performance anxiety specialists who have the proper knowledge and equipment to assess various conditions affecting musicians.  Dr. Henning Vauth is co-director for a team of specialists who help with education, treatment, and research concerning physical and psychological factors that can inhibit personal performance.

The MU School of Music is an institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Music.
Dr. Martin Saunders, Director
School of Music

Mission Statement

The mission of the Marshall University School of Music is threefold:

  • To prepare students for pursuing careers and lifelong learning and engagement in music
  • To provide enriching musical experiences for all Marshall University students
  • To serve as an essential cultural resource for the region

In the pursuit of our mission, we are committed to the following goals:

  • To foster an inclusive, student-centered environment that inspires music and academic excellence, personal growth, and entrepreneurship
  • To educate students to think critically, work creatively and collaboratively, communicate effectively, and become technologically competent
  • To champion the scholarly and creative achievement of our exemplary music faculty
  • To provide leadership within the University and the region in all matters pertaining to music
  • To function as a vital and visible contributor to the cultural life of the community through performances, festivals, and other presentations, as well as engaging in collaborative partnerships