Providing Access to Excellence
Showing kids the power of music
With a graceful hand, Cleo Miele motions the bow of her violin against the strings of the instrument. What comes out is a beautiful, perfectly tuned melody– a sound the talented musician has been perfecting since age 10.
"I started playing in fifth grade and in high school I realized that I could do this for a career,” says Cleo, who aspires to be an orchestra instructor.
With a passion for music and a drive to share its power, Cleo, 21, enrolled at UTSA where she was awarded the Felix and Elizabeth McKinney Scholarship.
“I know that I’m privileged to have received the McKinney scholarship,” says Cleo, a music major. “I don’t have to take out loans or work a full-time job. I feel very lucky, it definitely gives me a lot more time to study and focus on what I love to do.”
Cleo, who has a 4.0 grade-point average is among UTSA’s brightest students. And while she admits maintaining a perfect GPA is hard work, the San Antonio native always finds time to give back to her community.
She is president for the student chapter of the American String Teachers Association, and a member of the UTSA String Project. She has mentored kids with the Youth Orchestra of San Antonio and has led fundraising efforts for non-profit organizations like the Roy Mass’ Youth Alternatives Center in Boerne.
“I don’t think its easy teaching kids, but I feel prepared after having gone through classes here,” says Cleo. “I really like to work with beginners, people who are just playing an instrument for the first time. There’s something about getting their initial interest started that’s really interesting to me.”
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