Internal Scholarships

The Elizabeth ‘Ma’ Sonier Memorial Scholarship

Laurel Music Camp was the dream of Elizabeth ‘Ma’ Sonier. As the principal force behind its founding in 1945, she served as its director and leader through her death in 1997. Devoted to music education her entire life, her vision for students of Fellowship Through Music has continued to drive the camp forward in her name. This scholarship acknowledges her desire for everyone to be able to come to camp, and honors the unwavering love and devotion she had for her students and for Laurel Music Camp.

Eligibility: available to a returning camper who has demonstrated financial need. 
Essay Topic: In 200-400 words, please tell us why you are returning to camp. 
Award: A full-tuition scholarship. 

The Ken Janssen Memorial Scholarship

​One of Laurel Music Camp’s earliest campers (a baritone vocalist in the choir), Ken Janssen became the patriarch of the first ‘Camp Family’ when he returned with his wife and children in the 1960s. Fiercely protective of the campers and the first stop for anyone needing help, Ken also had a reputation for a devilish sense of humor and helped to foster the strong sense of community and camaraderie among the staff that still exists today. His legacy includes current LMC staff members Cliff Janssen (son), Kim Friend (daughter), and Derek Friend (grandson).

Eligibility: open to male vocalists from any location. Preference is given to a student who demonstrates the need for assistance with registration costs. 
Essay Topic: Please write a paragraph that discusses the way in which the spirit of Ken Janssen applies to you.
Award: A half-tuition scholarship.

The Janis Wetmore Memorial Scholarship

​Janis Wetmore was a beloved LMC camper, junior counselor, and staff member from 1969 through her tragic death in 1990. A talented teacher in the Keene, NH school system, she was heavily involved in the visual and performing arts, and worked primarily as a vocal advisor at Laurel Music Camp. Janis was loved and respected by everyone who worked with her, and the staff who knew her remember her dedication and charm.

Eligibility: open to a vocalist from Newington, CT. 
Essay Topic: Please write a paragraph that discusses the way in which the spirit of Janis Wetmore applies to you.
Award: A half-tuition scholarship. 

The Doris Rayner Memorial Scholarship

​One of the original founders of Laurel Music Camp, Doris Rayner was a Choir Director at East Hartford High School and served as President of the Connecticut Music Educators Association. Known for her passion for music education, Doris influenced countless students’ lives through her roles in East Hartford and through Laurel Music Camp. The scholarship is made possible thanks to one of those students, East Hartford Band Director Candis Guastamachio.

Eligibility: open to a student from East Hartford, CT. 
Essay Topic: Applicants must submit a short, written statement which explains why Miss Rayner is important to East Hartford and to Laurel Music Camp.
Award: A full-tuition scholarship. 

The Linda J. Coachman Memorial Scholarship

Linda J. Coachman worked for many years for the City of Hartford’s Department of Social Services, helping and supporting children, the elderly, and anyone in need. Her love for music intersected with this work, and was instrumental in her son Damon’s participation in Laurel Music Camp as both a camper and staff member. Established by her spouse Vester and son Damon in memory of her contributions, the Linda J. Coachman Memorial Scholarship assists students from urban and under-served areas wishing to attend Laurel Music Camp.

Eligibility: open to any camper, with preference given to students from CT District Reference Groups G, H, and I.
Award: A full-tuition scholarship.

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