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Harvey recipient of Bice Hawaii sabbatical
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Filed under Public Information on Thursday, October 25, 2018 by Author: Public Information.

As Chair of the Department of Music and Director of the MSU Texas Kodály Teacher Institute, Dr. Susan Harvey continually researches new teaching strategies, song repertoire, and folk dances to incorporate into music education courses. In August, Harvey traveled 3,400 miles west – to Hawaii – for research that will help prepare her students for their own music careers. She is the 2018-2019 recipient of the Bice Faculty Support Grant, a sabbatical program that allows a faculty member to spend time at retired physician Dr. Paul Bice’s Hawaii home.

The Bice Faculty Support Grant was created last year as an opportunity to support faculty’s work in the arts, humanities, and social sciences to enhance research, artistic endeavors, performance, and teaching. Bice offers his Maui home as well as additional funding and provisions for 10-14 days.

The foundation of the Kadály method is teaching the significance of heritage and culture, the folk music of a society. While in Hawaii, Harvey made videos and recordings of Hawaiians’ ukulele music and hula dancing, and even took hula lessons. She studied how music was part of Hawaii’s cultural history and attended community workshops so that she might bring back lessons that can be used in the classrooms. She will teach a workshop next year in a Kodály session.

Harvey said that although Hawaii is the 50th state in the union, aside from a popular version of Somewhere Over the Rainbow or kitschy “Hawaiian” music, most people may not know much about true Hawaiian folk music, and the state’s culture and history. Her research will become part of the curriculum taught in the secondary and elementary music method courses that help prepare students for music teaching careers. Harvey also said that the ukulele, often associated with Hawaiian music, is experiencing a resurgence in popularity because of its size, affordability, simplicity, and relative ease to play.

The Bice Faculty Support Grant began last year for faculty of the Lamar D. Fain College of Fine Arts and the Prothro-Yeager College of Humanities and Social Sciences. Associate Professor of Art Catherine Prose was the first recipient. The art resulting from her time in Hawaii was shown last fall in Moffett Library.

When the program was announced last year, MSU President Suzanne Shipley called it a “wonderful opportunity” for renewal and research in the arts, humanities, and social sciences. “We are thankful to Dr. Bice for this inventive and generous faculty development program,” she said.

Bice served as a community advisor for the university’s radiologic sciences program for several years, and he is a longtime member of the President’s Excellence Circle. “By joining the PEC, I learned more about the opportunities at MSU,” said Bice. “I was able to meet students and faculty, hear their stories, and learn how financial aid and grants help them.”

Although Bice’s discipline was rooted in the sciences, he is passionate about the development of mind through the arts and humanities. “For the people coming to Maui, I want this to serve as inspiration and renewal of their creativity and to be a true respite for artists,” Bice said.

Faculty members interested in participating in the program are required to submit a one-page description of how the time on Maui will be used to advance them professionally, either in their teaching, creative endeavors, or research.

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