Salvador to join Music Education faculty
MSU College of Music welcomes leading educator and scholar.
Teacher, scholar and musician Karen Salvador will join the faculty of the Michigan State University College of Music as assistant professor of music education in fall 2019. She is currently associate professor of music at the University of Michigan-Flint and assumes her new role following the retirement from MSU of renowned music educator Cynthia Taggart.
Salvador coordinates the Music Teacher’s Certificate Program at UM-Flint, teaches courses in music education, supervises teacher candidates, and teaches early childhood music at the UM-Flint Early Childhood Development Center. Her previous experience includes teaching elementary general music and choir in Eaton Rapids, Michigan, choir and drama in New Zealand, and early childhood music at the MSU Community Music School.
Published numerous times in journals, Salvador’s research pertains to how music educators meet individual student needs, particularly in early childhood and elementary grades. This research extends into music teacher education, exploring both program practices for music educator preparation and also the lived experiences of music educators who are working to become more inclusive and responsive. She is past president of the Michigan Music Education Association. On a national level she serves as co-facilitator for the Society for Music Teacher Education’s ASPA on Cultural Diversity and Social Justice, and she is president-elect of the North Central Division of the National Association for Music Education. She is also the site coordinator for the Early Childhood Music and Movement Association’s biennial international convention, which she will bring to MSU in June 2020.
Taggart, who will retire as professor of music education at the end of the 2018-19 academic year, followed extensive elementary and preschool teaching experience with an exemplary career in music education. She joined the faculty of MSU in 1993, is past president of the College Music Society, and directs and teaches in the Early Childhood Music Program of the MSU Community Music School. She is a recipient of the MSU Teacher-Scholar award, the Beal Outstanding Faculty Award, the Curricular Service-Learning and Civic Engagement Award, the Withrow Award for Excellence in Teaching from the MSU College of Music, and the Michigan Music Educator of the Year Award from the Michigan Music Education Association. As an author, editor, teacher and scholar, Taggart’s influence will be felt for decades to come.
“Cindy Taggart has been a force of nature here at Michigan State University and across our profession for decades,” said Associate Professor of Music Education and Chair of the Music Education Area Mitchell Robinson. “She has changed the way we think about early childhood music education and has been a wonderful role model for generations of students and teachers who feel driven to work with our youngest learners. Her expectations for musicianship, high quality teaching, and compassion in the music classroom have set a standard to which all of us aspire.”
Taggart said she will stay active in retirement, working on a variety of music education writing projects and beginning her service as the National President for the Gordon Institute for Music Learning. Salvador understands well the impact that Taggart has had at MSU, in Michigan and around the nation.
"I look forward to continuing Cindy Taggart's legacy of supporting students while challenging them to think about music, education, and music education,” Salvador said.
Salvador earned a Ph.D. in Music Education and a master’s degree in choral conducting from MSU. She earned her bachelor’s degree in vocal performance from Western Michigan University and post-baccalaureate teacher certification from Olivet College.
“I can think of no better successor to Dr. Taggart’s legacy here at MSU than our newest colleague, Dr. Karen Salvador. Karen has distinguished herself as a musician, educator, and scholar over the course of her career, and has emerged as one of the most interesting and compelling voices in our profession,” Robinson said. “Dr. Salvador has also built a strong national profile as a leader in music education at both the state and national levels, and we look forward to her contributions to our collaborative work here in the College of Music. We are thrilled to welcome her back to the Spartan music education community.”
Salvador is a strong advocate for music education as a part of the school experience for every child, and she is looking forward to bringing that enthusiasm back to campus when she returns with her husband and children.
"I'll be bringing my daughters, Ele and Zoe, and my husband Jim with me to East Lansing,” Salvador said. “I loved my time at Michigan State when I was in graduate school, and I am excited to join my brilliant, musical, kind, forward-thinking mentors as we work together as a faculty to prepare music educators and teacher educators.”