Education in Music Award Guidelines

Created in 2008 by the CMS Beyond Fifty Campaign, the Education in Music Award is a cash prize awarded to recognize established and on-going, imaginative and effective programs of engagement by higher education music faculty members that further education in music with local or area organizations (e.g., schools, civic associations, faith organizations).

The Education Award provides a $500 stipend.



All individual higher education music faculty, groups of faculty, and music units (i.e., conservatories, departments, schools)  are eligible to apply for The Education in Music Award.


Project Narratives

Because the selection of proposals is based upon materials submitted, it is important to write a project narrative that can be understood and evaluated fairly.  The purpose of the narrative is to convey to the review committee the type of interactions that are occurring in the community setting and how your specific project is innovative and exemplifies the principles of effective and meaningful community engagement in music. The narrative, including all of the parts below, may be up to five pages and should be double-spaced in at least an 11-point font with 1" margins.

The project narrative should address these six categories:

1. Program, Goals, and Objectives - Describe the program and its goals and objectives.  When was this program created?  What is it about this program that is innovative?

2. Community Needs and BenefitsDescribe the needs that this program helps to fulfill. Who are the stakeholders in the program? What are the roles of the music faculty member(s) and the community partners in this program and how do all stakeholders benefit? Are music students involved in the program? Include any data that can help the review committee understand the scope, depth, and reach of the program.

3. Sustainability - How has this program been sustained and supported to this point? What is the total budget of the program and how is this budget being spent? Are their any dollar or in-kind matches, either singly or continuing? How will this program be sustained in the future?

4. Applicant's Background/History - What makes the faculty member qualified to engage in this program? Describe any past engagement experiences that relate to the program.

5. Evaluation Method - What evidence exists that the program is meetings its goals? How do you measure the success of the program and its impact on the community?

6. Project Timeline Identifying Key ActivitiesDescribe how the program has unfolded over time and how it is projected to develop in the future. How might receiving the Education in Music Award support and further the success of the program?



The complete proposal consists of the following:

(1) Your Project Narrative
(2) A short biography of 250 words or less for each participant.
(3) Any letters of support from students, parents, teachers, community members, or other stakeholders that would strengthen the application.

All applications are due July 27, 2020. The 2020-2021 award will be announced on August 27, 2020.


Submitting your Application

The College Music Society's submission process is powered by Submittable. To submit an application, please (1) log in to the CMS members-only website using your user name and password and then (2) click the 'Submit' button below. You will be directed to Submittable to complete your proposal. If you don't already have a Submittable account, you will be prompted to establish one. (Click here for help using Submittable and to view a list of Frequently Asked Questions.)


You must be a CMS member to submit a proposal.
Please log in and the 'Submit' button will appear in this location. Or, click here to join CMS.