Seth K. Lowery ’19 chose Shenandoah because of the positive experiences they had with their colleagues while studying at the university, and because it was the only university that offered their desired degree program, a Master of Music in pedagogy.
“Shenandoah cares,” said Lowery. “SU is always striving to bring people together with constructive and restorative conversation. During my time at SU, I had so many opportunities to engage with the campus community as a member of the LGBTQ community, spiritually, and as an activist.”
Lowery’s fondest memories of Shenandoah involve the people. They loved being a part of the Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Fraternity on-campus and that they, along with their classmates, genuinely enjoyed what they were doing in the pedagogy program. They also had a good relationship with their professors.
At one point during their time at the university, Lowery was struggling with some ongoing mental health issues and Chair of Vocal/Choral Division, Director of Graduate Vocal Pedagogy Programs, Executive Director of CCM Institute and Professor of Voice Kathryn Green D.M.A, noticed something going on and made sure to check in with them. “She approached me with compassion and respect and helped me to get the help that I needed,” said Lowery.
Lowery currently works at The Voice Lab in Chicago, Illinois. “The Voice Lab offers lessons in both singing and gender-affirming voice care, and I really love offering services specifically geared toward the trans community!” said Lowery.
Prior to their current role, Lowery was an instructor of music at Tiffin University in Tiffin, Ohio. In this position, they taught voice and music theory in the university’s budding commercial music program.
The most rewarding part of Lowery’s career is having the opportunity to engage in co-creative experiences with students, helping them to grow in autonomy and confidence with their art and themselves. “Their musical development and personal growth are why I do what I do,” said Lowery.
Lowery believes that Shenandoah’s cutting edge curriculum set them up for success in their career since it has the only master’s program in voice pedagogy for musicians in commercial styles. This prepared them to teach in the commercial music program at Tiffin. They also took courses like jazz theory, American musical theater, vocal jazz and contemporary songwriting, which they incorporate into their teaching now. “I grew so much at SU, not only as a scholar, but as an artist and as a person willing to engage with the world,” said Lowery.
Lowery’s advice to students is: “Be a whole person. While you are in school, lean into moments that not only teach you facts and develop skills, but lean into the moments that make you challenge your conception of the world. Lean into the moments that help you to grow. Lean into conversations that help you engage your field on a deeper level.”