Scholarships and program-related endowments prepare young artists for exciting careers in music, and enrich the community with artistic and innovative musicians, scholars, music educators, and ambassadors for the arts.

Friends of Music at Mason

The Friends of Music at Mason’s mission is to support and build community awareness of George Mason University‘s outstanding Reva and Sid Dewberry Family School of Music and to raise scholarship funds for deserving music students. As a Friend of Music, your efforts and contributions will: 

  • Support specific areas of study through student scholarships and program-related endowments 
  • Prepare young artists for exciting careers in music 
  • Enrich the community with artistic and innovative musicians, scholars, music educators, and ambassadors for the arts 

Your life will benefit as well through: 

  • Connection with the Dewberry School of Music’s renowned faculty 
  • Interaction through activities and programs that allow the Friends of Music and music students to get to know each other outside of the classroom
  • Volunteer opportunities for an array of special events and programs that support our students and faculty 

All Friends of Music at Mason receive: 

  • Recognition in Dewberry School of Music concert programs 
  • Invitations to special concerts and receptions 
  • Unique educational programs and master classes by guest artists
  • E-communications from the Dewberry School of Music and Friends of Music at Mason 
  • Opportunities to participate in special scholarship programs and activities 

Levels of Support are listed in Playbills as: 

  • Friend – up to $199 
  • Performer – $200 – $499 
  • Section Leader – $500 – $999 
  • Soloist – $1000 – $4999 
  • Diva – $5000 – $9999 
  • Conductor – $10,000 + 

The Friends of Music at Mason (FOMM) has a wide variety of opportunities for everyone to become involved.

Please email Amanda Snellings or call 703-993-1593 if you are interested in any of the following opportunities. 

  • Snack Attack- Provide caloric and emotional support for Mason music students during finals 
  • Welcome Tables- Provide information about Mason Music at performances throughout the season 
  • Mailings 
  • Special Events 

To make a gift to support our Friends of Music scholarships, please visit the donation page and enter the gift amount in the Friends of Music designation.

Please direct any questions to Amanda Snellings or call 703-993-1593. 

$5 Million Commitment for Scholarships

In the Fall of 2020, at the Grand Piano Celebration, the Dewberry School of Music honored Sid Dewberry for his lifetime spirit of generosity including his latest $5 Million Commitment for Scholarships.


Image: School of Music students with Sid Dewberry (center) and Dr. Linda Monson (far left).

The Friends of Music Board


  • President: Linda Harber   
  • First Vice President: Bob Warakomsky  
  • Vice President for Special Events: Barbara Jacksier 
  • Vice President for Finance: Joe Kanyan  
  • Vice President for Outreach: David Ritchey 
  • Secretary: Open 

Board of Directors 

  • Sarah Selveraj D’Souza  
  • Alice Heyer 
  • June Huang 
  • Jerry Long 
  • Dr. Linda Apple Monson 
  • Manny Pablo 
  • Sue Perlin 
  • Stacey Remick-Simpkins 
  • Claire Saret 
  • Marilyn Smith 
  • David Stone 
  • Sherry Watkins 
  • Marty Whipple 

Board Associates 

  • Susan Aitel 
  • David Anderson 
  • Jim Bennett 
  • Michelle Blandburg 
  • Mike Booth 
  • Jennifer Disano
  • Sophy Peng Ender
  • Kim Fogelson
  • Audrey Fortner 
  • Shelly Gersten 
  • Linda Hamerschlag 
  • Evans Mandes 
  • Kevin McCarthy 
  • Kay Rongley 
  • Chris Scheer
  • Mindy Sims
  • Loza Teodros

The Power of an Endowed Gift to Mason

Find out how an endowment gift provides a brighter future for Mason students.

When you make a donation to our endowment, you give a gift with both immediate and long-term benefits. Music scholarship endowments are a great way to cement your legacy at Mason, or honor or memorialize a loved one’s appreciation for music, all while supporting music students in perpetuity. Endowment donors may set criteria so they know their support is furthering the future of their favorite music, whether it’s supporting a specific instrument, genre, ensemble position, etc. In addition to scholarships, endowments may also be created for academic programs, faculty positions, or research.

A great way to start an endowment is by using your required minimum distribution (RMD) from a retirement account, qualifying those payments as charitable giving deductions on your taxes. The minimum for an endowment at Mason is $25,000, and can be paid in as little as $5,000 installments over 5 years. This would provide for a perpetual gift of $1,000 per year at a 4 percent spending level. Non-cash gifts, such as stocks, may also be used to start an endowment.

You do not have to be the original donor that set up the endowment in order to support an established scholarship. Often friends and family will donate to a scholarship named for a loved one, or alumni and supporters might donate to a scholarship named in a beloved faculty member’s honor. 

To learn more about starting or supporting an endowment, email Amanda Snellings, Assistant Director of Development, or call 703-993-1593.

Endowed Scholarships for Music Students:

  • Grace Aitel Award Endowed Scholarship
  • Fred Begun Memorial Percussion Scholarship and Program
  • Dr. Barry and Velma Berkey Music Endowed Scholarship
  • John S. and Judith T. Bland Endowed Scholarship
  • Jean Carrington Cook Endowed Scholarship
  • Lucy C. Church Endowed Scholarship
  • Dr. Sam di Bonaventura Memorial Endowed Scholarship
  • Ebert Horn Studies Endowed Scholarship
  • Joseph M. Kanyan Endowed Scholarship
  • Lieder/Fell Opera Endowed Scholarship
  • The Patricia A. Long Endowed Scholarship for Jazz Studies
  • Anthony J. Maiello Music Endowed Scholarship
  • Linda Apple Monson Scholars Endowed Fund
  • Mildred Elaine Tetsell Parker Vocal Studies Endowed Scholarship
  • Peterson Family Foundation Endowed Scholarship
  • Peterson Family Endowed Scholarship in the Vocal Arts
  • Carol M. Robinson and Peter R. Barcher PhD Endowed Scholarship
  • Joseph D. Shirk Memorial Endowed Music Scholarship
  • Shirley Udelson Memorial Endowed Scholarship
  • Captain Robert Warakomsky, USCG (Ret.) and Mrs. Patricia Warakomsky Music Endowed Scholarship
“It is a great honor for me to attend George Mason University’s School of Music and receive the Peterson Scholarship to continue my education and advanced training in Vocal Performance.” – Seon Gyu Park

Student Success Stories

Eddie Adams Strings student at Mason
A Story of Courage and Survival Through Adversity

Eddie Adams came to George Mason in the spring of 2018 and was accepted into the Dewberry School of Music’s demanding orchestral program. With no financial safety net available, and relying on scholarship support and financial aid, learn how Eddie  struggled with poverty, family problems, and personal identity, and how his passion for playing the cello became a personal lifeline.

Crystal Golden (MM, Vocal Performance, 2019) was discovered by Patricia Miller, director of vocal studies and a Distinguished University Professor of Music at Mason, when she was a 14 year-old high school student. When it was time for Golden to apply to college, she decided to follow the professor who had already taught her so much. Golden, a soprano, earned her bachelor of music with a concentration in vocal performance in 2016, graduating summa cum laude. She went back to Mason to study for her MM in Vocal Performance (graduating in 2019), an achievement made possible in part by being awarded the Peterson Endowed Vocal Studies Scholarship.

Kristen Chenoweth is headlining at ARTS by George! on September 24, 2022, at the Center for the Arts.
Kristen Chenoweth headlined at ARTS by George! on September 24, 2022, at the Center for the Arts.

ARTS by George!

The College of Visual and Performing Arts holds a lively and enjoyable fundraising event each September called ARTS by George! that directly supports our academic student scholarships.  

ARTS by George! has raised more than $1.8 million since it began in 2006. The evening begins by showcasing the remarkable talents of Mason students amid an array of spectacular food and beverages, and culminates with a show-stopping headliner performance in the Center for the Arts Concert Hall. 

After a postponement in 2020, the event came back in a slightly different format in 2021. Arts Emerging: A Celebration of Renewal, a family-friendly extravaganza full of arts, food, and community that mostly took place outdoors raised more than $150,000 for scholarships. ARTS by George! returned to its regular programming in the Fall of 2022.

ARTS by George! Photo Gallery

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Symphony orchestra students performing before an audience of patrons and members of the public at ARTS by George! in 2022.
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Graduate piano students performing at ARTS by George! in 2022
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Mason Jazz Ensemble playing at the Fall 2021 Arts Emerging Concert