National Association for Music Education Announces Recipients of Shannon Kelly Kane Scholarship

RESTON, VA (July 25, 2012) — Samantha Baldwin (Cobleskill, New York) and Curtis Viselli (Windermere, Florida) were awarded the Shannon Kelly Kane Scholarship for 2012. The Scholarship was created by Shannon’s family and friends in coordination with the National Association for Music Education (NAfME) to honor her exemplary life and her love of teaching music.

Originally from Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania, Shannon earned a Bachelor of Music in Music Education with performance honors from Syracuse University. She student taught at Westhill High School, where she conducted the wind ensemble and assisted with the percussion ensemble, brass ensemble, and jazz ensemble; and at Soule Road Middle School, where she conducted the seventh and eighth grade concert and jazz bands. Shannon was working on her Master of Music in Instrumental Conducting at the University of Florida from August 2008 until her untimely passing in February 2009. Shannon had a passion for music and taught her students with kindness and respect, but what most people remember about her was her smile and positive outlook on life.

Samantha Baldwin, a recent graduate of Syracuse University’s Setnor School of Music, is currently pursuing a master’s degree in Music Education and Instrumental Conducting. As principal flute performer in all of Syracuse’s instrumental ensembles and one of three Drum Majors for the University Marching Band, Samantha has been a very engaged member of the university community.  Locally she has served as a student teacher for a number of schools and a flutist at two churches.  She plans to teach after graduation.

Curtis Viselli received a Bachelor of Music Education, Instrumental Emphasis, from the University of Florida in May 2012 and will begin his first teaching position in the fall. While attending the University of Florida, Curtis was an active member of Phi Mu Alpha, a music fraternity, and received the prestigious Reitz music scholarship during his junior year. Curtis’s involvement with music began at a young age but it was not until he arrived at the University of Florida that he decided to pursue a career as a music educator.

“Shannon was passionate about music and the positive influence it had on her students,” said Mike and Leigh Kane, Shannon’s parents. “This passion is also evident in the scholarship award winners. While Shannon was taken too quickly from this world, it gives us some comfort to know that we can help others who share the same passion for music. We wish the winners much success in their future endeavors.”

For more information on the Shannon Kelly Kane Scholarship Fund, visit For more information about the National Association for Music Education call 1-800-336-3768, or visit



National Association for Music Education, among the world’s largest arts education organizations, is the only association that addresses all aspects of music education. NAfME advocates at the local, state, and national levels; provides resources for teachers, parents, and administrators; hosts professional development events; and offers a variety of opportunities for students and teachers. The Association orchestrates success for millions of students nationwide and has supported music educators at all teaching levels for more than a century.




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