USF Music Education Alumna Melissa Salguero is a Finalist for the $1 Million Global Teaching Prize
Thursday, March 14, 2019
USF music education alumna and music teacher Melissa Salguero is a top 10 finalist for the Global Teaching Prize for her work teaching music to students at the P.S. 48 Joseph R. Drake school in the South Bronx, New York City.
The Global Teaching Prize, hosted by the Varkey Foundation, is an annual $1 million award presented to a teacher who has made an outstanding contribution to their profession.
Upon joining the school in 2010, Salguero established a school band program to bring music to students, many of whom face issues such as homelessness, poverty, and violence. She applied to grants to raise money for musical instruments, which are provided to the students free of charge.
Salguero wakes up early to meet with students before school and has noticed an increase in her students’ school attendance since starting the program.
After their instruments were stolen and vandalized in 2014, Salguero’s students wrote lyrics for a song, “We Will Rise,” which was recorded and distributed as part of their crowdfunding campaign to raise money for new instruments.
Their campaign attracted the attention of Ellen Degeneres, who invited Salguero to the show and in conjunction with printing company Shutterfly donated instruments and $50,000 to the P.S. 48 music program.
In 2018, Salguero was named the 2018 GRAMMY Music Educator of the Year for her work with P.S. 48.
Salguero will attend a Global Teaching Prize concert on March 23 and the Global Teaching Prize award ceremony on March 24 in Dubai.
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