As she completes her last semester at Meredith College, Alexis Chastain, ’18 feels prepared and excited to begin the next chapter of her life as a music educator.
While earning a degree in music education and obtaining K-12 licensure, Alexis has enjoyed participating in on-campus organizations. She has served as vice president and secretary of the Meredith chapter of Sigma Alpha Iota International Music Fraternity, and she is a Meredith Teaching Fellow.
“As Teaching Fellows, we get to be around a group of aspiring teachers who are passionate about education and their students, where we can watch each other grow and become better educators no matter what field we’re in,” said Alexis. “It really helps us be the best educators we can possibly be.”
She also spends many hours volunteering within the music department. “I love how they take students from all backgrounds and help them grow,” said Alexis. “All the women here support one another and make each other stronger musicians.”
In addition to her commitment to volunteering and educating, Alexis has thrived as a musician at Meredith. She can play all the instruments involved in band and orchestra performances, but she admits that she is most passionate about playing the tenor saxophone. “As a music education major, I need to be able to teach people how to play any of those instruments and be able to play them myself.”
Alexis has conducted orchestra concerts, played in musicals and operas, performed at her senior recital, and even had three of her own arrangements performed at Meredith’s annual Winterfest concert. All of these are some of her most memorable times at Meredith.
“Performances have made me stronger because I had such stage fright, but now I’ve had so much experience performing onstage with other musicians. It’s helped me become more confident as a musician and a teacher,” Alexis said.
Although she admits that coming to college six hours from home was a challenge, she credits her move to Raleigh with making her a stronger woman. Alexis was able to meet friends within her first week of being on campus, with whom she still remains close today, and her new community has helped her grow artistically.
“Being in a community that supports the arts has really helped me,” said Alexis. “Coming from a small town, I love how much opportunity and support there are for the arts here. I’ve been able to do things like see a symphony for the first time and visit the art museum.”
As she moves forward and graduates in May, Alexis is looking forward to teaching music, doing mission work, and going abroad.
“I feel confident in what I know, and I’m not afraid to make mistakes,” she said. “I have a support network now through students and faculty, so I know I’ll always have someone to reach out to if I need it.”
By Miranda Daughtry, ’18
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