F&M Stories

Summer Intern Makes Music for Everyone

The Franklin & Marshall student experience doesn't stop when the academic year ends. From internships in Lancaster to travel around the world and research across the country, our students continue their quest for knowledge this summer.

Initially drawn to Franklin & Marshall for science and tech, rising junior Reece Chang changed his tune after rediscovering a passion for music.

"I got here and I took a lot of STEM [science, technology, engineering and math] classes, and eventually decided that I found my endeavors with music to be more fulfilling," said Chang, from Salisbury, Md.

Now, he's spending his summer working with Lancaster nonprofit Music for Everyone (MFE).

The internship is made possible by Public Service Summer Institute (PSSI), offered by the Ware Institute for Civic Engagement. These paid interns live and work in Lancaster for eight weeks in the summer. Participating students gather weekly at F&M for workshops and reflection with Ware Institute staff in addition to completing service projects in the afternoon.

The partnership with MFE is fitting for Chang, who grew up playing brass instruments and directs The Chessmen, F&M's all-male a cappella group.

 

"I'm an extra set of hands for an organization that is invested in a lot of different things in the community," Chang said.

Some days, that means administrative work. Other days, Chang assists at youth summer camps. This month, he helped coordinate countywide musicians for the organization's monthly "Music Friday."

He's even found himself at the center of a drum circle during a recent event downtown.

A meaningful component of Chang's work has been Music for Every Vet, an MFE initiative helping those with post-traumatic stress disorder.

"Veterans with PTSD are guided through journaling and writing workshops, and end up writing poetry and then eventually get help putting that into music by some musicians that work with the program," he said.

Now on a committed path toward a music degree, Chang's summer experience is inspiring new paths toward his future.

"As a music major, I've thought a lot about going into education. But I'm also really interested in nonprofit community work. Music for Everyone is a great place for me to be for that," he said.

 

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