Music leadership from the heart
A baseball scholarship encouraged Laingsburg native Drew Jones to gain interest in coming to Central Michigan University; however, an audition at the School of Music stimulated his commitment.
Jones was initially considering a career in the medical field but his love for music surpassed the idea of fulfilling a pre-med degree. His heart condition, which he had to undergo open-heart surgery for in December 2012, kept him from moving forth with the baseball path, but when he found out he was accepted into the School of Music, he became a Chippewa.
“I always say that baseball got me to look but music got me to stay,” Jones laughed. Jones, who is double majoring in music education and performance, is involved with Phi Mu Alpha, Central Foundation, opera theatre, orchestra, and many ensembles, as well as being a part of the events staff.
Jones said he has never questioned his decision to come to CMU and play at the School of Music.
“At other schools it may be more competitive, so the music is good,” Jones said. “But at CMU the music is better because it’s like playing with your friends, and when the bond is there, too, the music created is unimaginable.”
One of his defining moments in the School of Music thus far was at a Wind Ensemble concert. Jones said he can’t really explain in words what the music was like but he felt like he was right where he needed to be.
Jones is the American Music Committee head in his music fraternity, Phi Mu Alpha, as well as the Jazz Weekend Coordinator. School of Music Director of Events John Jacobson said Jones is a hard worker and he never sees him stop working. When asked about his work ethic, Jones modestly plays it off like it’s nothing.
“It’s just really who I am. I don’t do things half-way, if I commit to something I will strive for perfection,” Jones said. Throughout his leadership roles, Jones said he has learned there is no such thing as being a perfectionist and it’s not a bad thing to be over-prepared. Jones said each of his experiences have helped him and he especially takes count for his mentors, Dr. Mark Cox, Dan Whilhem, Corey Jahlas and Danielle VanTuinen.
“They are all such strong players and they are responsible,” Jones said. “Whenever I have questions I can go to them to help guide me.”
For the future of Jones post-graduation he said he is unsure of what he will be doing. He is currently weighing between pursuing high school band, or teaching at the collegiate level.
“All I really know is that I still want to play, that’s the only think I know for certain,” he said.