The Music School of Delaware Receives $100K Donation
The school, with two locations in Wilmington and Milford, recently received a $100,000 donation from Dr. William J. Stegeman, a board member, key donor, and longtime student of the school. Stegeman has been attending performances at the school for years.
Kate Ransom, the CEO and president of The Music School of Delaware, said the excellence of faculty and the accomplishments of students inspired Stegeman’s support. After taking on a board position, Stegeman gained insight into the school’s goals and needs.
Stegeman first became involved with the school 15 years ago, when he brought his granddaughter for violin lessons. Shortly thereafter, Stegeman decided that he wanted to learn to play the violin himself, and was paired with Ransom. Stegeman said he dedicated this donation to her.
“I did this to perpetuate access to the music school’s excellence,” he said. “My donation is in honor of Kate Ransom – the school’s CEO for the past 16 years – and her devotion to the pursuit of excellence; advancement of the school and its mission; and commitment to high-quality music education for all.”
The Music School of Delaware was founded in 1924 and “is the only statewide, accredited, community music school in the nation, serving residents of Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Maryland.”
The school offers standard-setting instructional programs for all ages and levels, including private lessons in all orchestral and band instruments as well as piano, organ, harpsichord, guitar, harp and voice; early childhood classes; Suzuki Academy; orchestral, choral and chamber music ensembles; music history and theory classes; music therapy; and special classes for adults.
According to the school, only 50 percent of the income needed each year comes from tuition, so the school relies on contributions from the community to fund the rest.
Stegeman has made contributions of more than $1 million in the past year, which has been used to pay off a construction loan for the school. Last year, he had the honor of choosing the name of the new wing at the school.
He is also encouraging the community to be generous, and has pledged to match annual gifts of $5,000 or more to the school’s campaign. He wanted to inspire others to give, and according to the school, the campaign has raised $40,000 so far.
Stegeman’s latest donation will be used for the Anthony G. Simmons Scholarship endowment fund, which will provide financial aid to students at the school.
Ransom said, “I am profoundly grateful to Bill. He has shown unprecedented commitment to regional arts and a great devotion to the school and our programs. Major gifts, endowment gifts and matching gifts such as these are transformational, each in their own way, providing residents throughout the Brandywine Valley and the region access to excellence in the arts.”
Ransom said a new location for the school’s Milford branch is currently being identified, and is estimated for June 2017.
The Music School of Delaware
4101 Washington Street
Wilmington, DE 19802
Phone: (302) 762-1132
10 South Walnut Street
Milford, DE 19963
Phone: (302) 422-2043
Article written by intern Myleah Lofland