From Taiwan to the US
When Catherine Wong was studying in Taiwan, a friend told her about a piano professor at Missouri State University. After learning more about the programs offered through the music department and the English Language Institute, she decided to apply. When she was accepted, she began studying with that same professor, Dr. Wei-han Su.
English for Musicians
Just like Catherine, international music students have the opportunity to study English in the English for Musicians program before beginning a music degree. In the program, they study English while taking music lessons and participating in ensembles. This helps the students improve their English skills and prepare for research while continuing to study music.
In Spring 2016, Catherine began the English for Musicians program. After one semester of study, she was then accepted into the Master of Music program where she continued to study with Dr. Su, accompany other music students, participate in ensembles, and research topics in music.
After graduating with a Master of Music in Piano Performance in May 2018, Catherine became a student worker in the Special Programs department of the English Language Institute. For her job, she helps recruit new students, communicate with current students, and do other support for the staff.
In addition to this job, she also accompanies and teaches private piano lessons in Springfield. As a result, she is an excellent example of a student who came to a new country to pursue her dreams and make them a reality.
Here are some interview responses form Catherine:
What was one of your favorite things about studying here?
“You can make friends from other country.”
What’s your favorite memory?
“I like the history class [in the English for Musicians program]. I remember Dr. Muchnick doing a finger opera.” *moves one finger like an opera character*
What was the hardest thing about studying English?
“Trying to talk in class ‘cause I’m shy.”
Do you feel like you got better?
“Not too many people were in the class. After you’re familiar with your classmates, it actually makes it easier to talk in class.”
What is your advice for anyone learning English?
“Speak as much as you can, listen as much as you can, and practice.”
For more information about the English for Musicians program, please visit https://international.missouristate.edu/eli/specialprograms/music.htm.