2016 SBO Scholarship Essay Contest Winners

Mike Lawson • News • April 4, 2016

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“Learning Music Is More Than A Class At School It Also…” was the theme of SCHOOL BAND AND ORCHESTRA’S 16TH annual scholarship essay contest. Several thousand entries were submitted as students competed for ten, $1,000 scholarships. The awards were given to five students grades 4 to 8 and five students grades 9 to 12. Their respective school music programs received a matching award of music products from co-sponsors NAMM, Alfred Music Publishing, EPN Travel Services, Sabian Ltd. Woodwind & Brasswind and Yamaha Corporation of America.

Since its inception the scholarship program has awarded $320,000 in funds and matching music products to the winners and their schools.  Two students from the state of Florida were winners. Other states represented include California, Georgia, Maryland, Mississippi, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas and Virginia. The music students received their scholarship awards from local music dealers representing  NAMM (National Association of Music Merchants) a major co-sponsor of the program. Participating music dealers included Island Music, Merritt Island, FL.; Bringe Music, St. Petersburg, FL.; Mississippi Music, Hattiesburg, MS.; Tulsa Band, Tulsa OK and Murphy’s Music Center, Irving, TX.  Music and Arts stores located in Rancho Cucamonga, CA, Jonesboro, Ga, Lutherville-Timonium, MD, Wellford SC and Williamsburg, VA were also represented.




16 Years, 80,000 Entries, $320,000 Awards 

SBO’s Scholarship Essay Contest

Join with pride – a marketing platform to promote your brand or services to more than 22,000 school music programs. Help make a direct impact on the lives of music students while showing your support for the nation’s music teachers.

Click here to read more about getting involved!



The winning  students and their school music programs and teachers in  the 4 to 8th grade category include Charla Gentry, D.R. Hill Middle School, Wellford, SC, Meredith Pendley, Music Director; Cindy Jia, Ridgely Middle School, Timonium, MD, Susan Wilson, Music Director; Gayda Mohamed, Sam Houston Middle School, Irving, TX, Justin Thomas, Music Director; Jayvyn Price, Mundy’s Mill Middle School, Jonesboro, GA, Heather Coleman, Music Director; Christine Trieu, Summit Intermediate Middle School, Rancho Cucamonga, CA, Jonathan Peske, Music Director. In the 9th to 12th grade category winners were Rand Perry, Bruton High School, Williamsburg, VA, Cara Townsend, Music Director; Logan Robertson, Collinsville High School, Collinsville, OK, Rod Mackey, Music Director;Gianna Santucci, Merritt Island High School, Merritt Island, FL, Benjamin Gerrard, Music Director, Chelsea Kendyl Schol, J W Mitchell High School, Trinity, FL, Joel Quina, Music Director and Haley Beth Williams, Park Place Christian Academy, Raymond, MS, Brad Brand, Music Director.

Above: Sam Tritico, owner of Island Music, Merritt Island, FL presents $1,000 scholarship check  to senior Gianna Santucci, Merritt Island High School.

Gianna was one of ten students who were awarded scholarships for their prize winning essays in the SCHOOL BAND AND ORCHESTRA  contest, “Learning Music Is More Than A Class At School…” This is the 16th year that SBO has awarded scholarships totaling $320,000 in scholarship funds and matching  music product to the student’s school music programs.  The scholarship program is co-sponsored by NAMM, Alfred Music Publishing, EPN Travel Services, Sabian Ltd., Woodwind &  Brasswind and Yamaha Corporation of America.

Grades 4-8

Charla Gentry

Grade 8
Age 13
Meredith Pendley, Music Director
D.R. Hill Middle School


Cindy Jia

Grade 8
Age 13
Susan Wilson, Music Director
Ridgely Middle School


Gayda Mohamed

Grade 7
Age 13
Justin Thomas, Music Director
Sam Houston Middle School


Jayvyn Price

Grade 7
Age 12
Heather Coleman, Music Director
Mundy’s Mill Middle School


Christine Trieu

Grade 8
Age 13
Music Director, Jonathan Peske
Summit Intermediate School


Grades 9 -12


Rand Perry

Grade 10
Age 15
Cara Townsend, Music Director
Bruton High School


Logan Robertson

Grade 12
Age 18
Rod Mackey, Music Director
Collinsville High School


Gianna Santucci

Grade 12
Age 18
Benjamin Gerrard, Music Director
Merritt Island High School


Chelsea Kendyl Schol

Grade 12
Age 17
Music Director, Joel Quina
J W Mitchell High School


Haley Beth Williams

Grade 12
Age 16
Music Director, Brad Brand
Park Place Christian Academy


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