Three Ways the Soundbreaking Campaign Made Waves at Berklee
Berklee’s Soundbreaking campaign recently came to its official end. Over the past five years, the campaign has raised more than $160 million to support Berklee students through scholarships, state-of-the-art facilities, and groundbreaking institutes. Here are three ways the campaign is transforming the experience of Berklee students.
1. More Berklee students can pursue their degrees with less student loan debt.
Financial aid for Berklee students was a top priority of Soundbreaking. The scholarships funded through the campaign provide financial support to students across all facets of Berklee: the College; the Conservatory; Berklee's campus in Valencia, Spain; and Berklee Online.
"The overwhelming success of Soundbreaking has enabled us to increase scholarship support by 130 percent since the campaign’s inception," said Berklee President Roger Brown. "This will broaden access to a Berklee education for a diverse group of talented young musicians from around the globe.”
Last fall, Berklee piloted the Thrive Scholarship, a program designed specifically to support upper-semester students who have demonstrated both academic achievement and financial need and are on track to graduate on time. Berklee has also developed a range of additional offerings—articulation agreements, credit by exam, online degrees, and MOOCs—to help reduce student debt and make music education more affordable for everyone.
Image courtesy of Berklee Valencia
2. Berklee students are studying, rehearsing, and performing in new and improved campus facilities.
Berklee’s Boston campus looks different than it did just a few years ago, with the addition of 160 Massachusetts Avenue, Berklee’s first custom-built facility. The multi-use building enhances many aspects of the Berklee student experience: it offers residence hall rooms and common areas, practice rooms, a fitness center, and a dining hall that doubles as a performance space. The building at 150 Massachusetts Avenue was also renovated, with the addition of a multipurpose rehearsal space, six music technology classrooms, five student meeting rooms, and two student lounges. The campaign has supported the growth of Berklee’s Valencia campus, which has become a stellar part of many students’ experiences. The college also joined forces with the City of New York to establish BerkleeNYC at the historic Power Station Studios in Manhattan.
3. Several new institutes are sparking fresh musical ideas and connections.
Founded during Soundbreaking, the following institutes provide fresh and invigorating perspectives on the culture, business, and art of music.
- The Berklee India Exchange (BIX) is a platform for students to perform Indian music and participate in cultural conversation about it.
- The Berklee Institute for Creative Entrepreneurship (BerkleeICE) helps students expand their career imaginations through the lens of startup business models and cross-disciplinary collaboration.
- The Berklee Popular Music Institute (BPMI) pairs student bands with music business students for a year that culminates with a slot at a major summer festival, such as Lollapalooza and Essence, among others.
- The Music and Health Institute explores music's role and potential for new ideas in the intersections of medicine, health, technology, and science.
- The Berklee Institute of Jazz and Gender Justice, Berklee’s newest institute, focuses on making jazz more equitable and the role jazz can play in the broader fight for gender equality.
As Soundbreaking draws to a close, the effects of the campaign will continue to shape the experiences of Berklee students for years to come. To learn more about the campaign, visit the Soundbreaking site.