Student Spotlight | School of Music | SIU

Southern Illinois University



College of Liberal Arts

Student Spotlight

Jackie Blackburn


Jackie Blackburn

Laguna Hills, CA

BA Music / Dental Hygiene

Music and... Dental Hygiene! Jackie is in the studio of Dr. Doug Worthen. My dream job is to be a dental hygienist, flute pedagogue and performer. Music is something that has always been a part of my life. That's why I chose to pursue a double major with music. Even though that can be very full profile >>

Yazmin Celaya


Yazmin Celaya

North Aurora, IL


Music and... Finance! Yazmin is a drum major in the Marching Salukis! My dream job is to be a Chief Financial Officer. Playing music keeps me connected to my passion. Music is an outlet for emotions and lets me express myself. I want to give lessons on my instrument to help others and possibly join full profile >>

Matthew Grammer


Matthew Grammer

Colorado Springs, CO

BM — Performance; Pre-Med track

Matthew is in the studio of Mr. Michael Barta. My dream job is to be a doctor. Music at SIU helps me return to my roots. Any time that classes or work start to over stress me, I know that I can find refuge in music and in a practice room. I came to SIU because of the stellar professors in the music full profile >>

Alfred Jamal Kinchen

Sophomore, BM: Piano Performance, BS: Aviation Flight

Alfred Jamal Kinchen

Racine, WI
BM: Piano Performance
BS: Aviation Flight

Jamal is in the piano studio of Dr. Yuko Kato. Jamal Kinchen's dream job is to become a commercial pilot. "Music is a very central part of me. It is the essence of my daily routine, whether it be practicing or simply listening. In a way, it is the glue that holds everything together. Both full profile >>

Brandon Lanning


Brandon Lanning

Somerset, OH
BA: Music Business

Music and... Business! Brandon Lanning is in the studio of Dr. Jessica Butler. My dream job is to become an Artist/Performer Agent.The reason I choose SIU was because their music business program is spectacular and the internship opportunities interested me. Dr. Butler is also an amazing full profile >>

Deanna Leach

Senior, BM: Vocal Performance

Deanna Leach

Davison, MI
BM: Vocal Performance

Deanna is a current member of the SIU Concert Choir and in the studio of Dr. David Dillard. Her dream is to perform in operas and with symphonies while also being a music therapist. “The music department at SIU has always been very supportive of me as I have navigated the difficulties of full profile >>

Danae Price

Freshman, BA: Music - Liberal Arts, piano

Carbondale, IL Freshman BA: Music – Liberal Arts, piano Danae is a current member of the SIU Concert Choir and in the piano studio of Dr. Yuko Kato. My dream job is to either start or be a director of a youth community center where I could mentor and teach music to underprivileged youth. The full profile >>

Diamond Talley

Marching Saluki

Diamond Talley - Photo By Brian Munoz

Metropolis, Illinois


BM - Music Education, Percussion

Music and Education! Diamond is currently a student of Dr. Christopher Butler. He is a member of the Marching Salukis, SIU Wind Ensemble, and SIU Percussion Ensemble.  My dream job is to be able help others harness their musical talents. Hopefully one day I will be able to make a full profile >>

Michalah "Micy" Troutt

Music Education, Percussion

Michalah Troutt

West Frankfort, IL
BM: Music Education

Music and... Marching Salukis! Michalah Troutt is in the studio of Dr. Christopher Butler. She is also a 2019-20 Provost Scholar, a recipient of the May Dorsey Memorial Music Scholarship, and has received the Charles Jurjevich Spirit Award from the Marching Salukis. My dream job is being an full profile >>

Mary Walden

Music Business

Mary Walden

Sherman, IL


BA Music Business / Voice

Music and... Business! Mary is a current member of the SIU Concert Choir and Marching Salukis. Without being able to study and perform music that I've worked hard on, school would be very bland. Music has always been a part of my academics. From simply helping me create friendships, to allowing full profile >>