Lander University Department of Music Honored at Summit

August 22, 2011
Buckner Award
(Left Picture): Cathy Buckner, left, mother of Taylor Buckner, and Lander University associate professor of music Dr. Lila Noonkester, right, display the awards they were presented in recognition of the quality job shadowing experience that Taylor Buckner enjoyed at Lander. Posing with Buckner and Noonkester is Linda Sheffield, director/regional career specialist of Piedmont Education and Business Alliance. (Right Picture): is McCormick Middle School student Taylor Buckner

The Lander University Department of Music was honored at the 2011 South Carolina Education and Business Summit, held recently in Greenville, for providing McCormick Middle School student Taylor Buckner with “an outstanding job- shadowing experience.”

Buckner was supposed to shadow associate professor of music Dr. Robert Gardiner, but a traffic accident kept Gardiner from reporting to work that day. Instead, she sat in on a piano lab, taught by assistant professor of music Dr. Robert Kelley; a music theory class, taught by music department chair Dr. Lila Noonkester; and a music history class, taught by professor emeritus of music Dr. Anthony Lenti.

She came away impressed. “I met some really exceptional people that day,” she said. “They all had a passion for what they did. They change the lives of students every day. I learned a lot — not just about music, but about life, about me.”

Noonkester said, “Lander’s Department of Music is honored to have been nominated for this award. I am proud to say that my colleagues are highly credentialed, performing musicians and scholars whose passion for teaching and learning is contagious.”

She continued, “It is gratifying to know that our efforts as educators not only have a positive effect on our own Lander music majors, but also can make an impact on a middle-schooler like Taylor, who is seeking career guidance. We, at Lander, are pleased to have played a small, but perhaps vital, role in Taylor’s future success.”