What do you get when you combine a passion for volunteering, musical talent, good character, hard work, and professionalism? You get a full scholarship to Berklee College of Music!
High school senior and Boys & Girls Clubs of Boston member Diamonte (Monte), was thrilled to find out recently that he earned his spot at Berklee—full tuition paid. It was exciting, albeit not surprising, news to everyone who knows him. From the moment that Monte first entered the Music Clubhouse at the Boys & Girls Club in 2014, he was on the path to success.
Music Director Daniel “DP” Pattianakota remembers Monte showing up that first summer with his trombone in hand. DP recommended that Monte try out the bass guitar, since it shares the bass clef with the trombone, and Monte took to it immediately. His first performance on bass was shortly thereafter at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Boston Music Awards. Monte has subsequently performed on bass at his successful auditions for the Boston Arts Academy, the Berklee City Music program, and Berklee College of Music. Last year, Monte and his band won a music competition and were invited to Dallas to perform at the Boys & Girls Clubs of America National Conference.
Still, it was more than just his musical expertise that got Monte that full scholarship to Berklee. “Monte has excellent character,” explains DP, “He has a good heart and always shows so much professionalism at the Clubhouse.” His strength of character led to his being hired as a Youth Leader for the Yawkey Club. Through this unique part-time job, Monte taught and mentored younger teens. He represented the Music Clubhouse well, always willing to introduce himself to visitors. He helped with everything ranging from setting up performances to various administrative duties. He also had the distinct responsibility of organizing the musical performances for the grand openings of two new branches of Bank of America.
DP says that these experiences have prepared Monte really well for Berklee and beyond. What they offer in the Music Clubhouse is a lot of collaborative and ensemble work, requiring youth to learn how to play together and to listen to each other, both musically and in their social interactions. They also focus on understanding the basics of musicianship and the necessity of preparation for performances. Furthermore, they instill in their youth the importance of representing themselves well, whether they’re hanging around with their peers, at an audition, or performing on stage. Not only do these principles align well with the music education and environment at Berklee, but they also prepare the teens for their future roles in life.
As for Monte, he’s already looking to his future. In addition to attending Berklee this fall, Monte is planning to do a work-study at the Music Clubhouse, where he can continue the valuable work he has done there already and give back to the community that supported him along his path to success.
This article was originally posted by BGCB partner Music & Youth, a nonprofit that creates accessible, sustainable, high-quality music programs so every young person can experience the magic of music. Visit their website for more information on their programming.