WMU News

Violin student receives $24,000 Rhea Fetzer Scholarship

April 28, 2004

KALAMAZOO--Freshman Josiah Schubkegel of Portage, Mich., is the third of four Western Michigan University students to receive a four-year $24,000 scholarship, thanks to a multiyear gift from the Fetzer Institute of Kalamazoo.

A music performance major, Schubkegel received the Rhea Yeager Fetzer Music Scholarship for students pursuing studies in string instruments--violin, viola, cello or double bass--in the University's School of Music. Schubkegel, who plays violin, will receive $6,000 toward each of four years of undergraduate study.

Schubkegel joins previous scholarship recipients Katherine J. "Katie" Lampen, a sophomore violist from Grand Rapids, Mich., and junior violinist Karen J. Ramberg of Kalamazoo. One additional four-year scholarship will be awarded to an incoming string music major this fall.

At WMU, Schubkegel studies under Renata Artman Knific, professor of music and chair of the string area within the School of Music.

"We are very grateful to the Fetzer Institute for its support of our program and students," says Knific. "Competition for the best string students remains very strong. Our ability to provide scholarship support is critical to maintaining the quality of our string program, which in turn plays a vital role in our symphony and chamber orchestras and a variety of ensembles."

The Fetzer Institute established the four scholarships with a five-year commitment of $96,000 as part of the institute's 2001 celebration of the 100th anniversary of the birth of institute founder John E. Fetzer. Rhea was John's wife, and institute officers said they wanted to do something as part of the 100th anniversary celebration that would specifically honor her memory.

Schubkegel has been playing the violin since he was 4 years old. He was co-concertmaster of the Kalamazoo Junior Symphony and won the concerto competitions of the junior symphony and the Kalamazoo Chamber Workshop. He has been a featured soloist on the "Bravo!" series of public radio station WMUK.

Media contact: Thom Myers, 269 387-8400, thom.myers@wmich.edu

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