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You Guys, Being In Charge Is Scary

Sometimes, you feel confident and well-prepared with something you're about to take. Other times, you just fly by the seat of your pants.

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Like many music educators, I am involved in my state organizations. For me, that means ACDA, and SCMEA (our branch of NAfME). I’m starting my third year serving on the middle school clinics committee, and my first as the chair of this committee.


Which means I’m in charge.

After teaching all day Friday, I drove down to Columbia for our first meeting of the school year. After the 1 1/2 hour commute I got to sit in on my first choral division board meeting. I have to say, it was very eye-opening. Not in a bad way, of course, but it just brought things to light for me that I hadn’t even considered. Like:

  • our professional organizations have lawyers in case someone tries to sue us for things. (eek!)

  • We manage A LOT of money.

  • As a committee chair, I am now responsible for a considerable chunk of this money.

  • Not only am I responsible for the money, but I have to make sure our clinic locations across the state run semi-smoothly.


(This is the point where I might have to go breathe into a paper bag or something)

Btw, Leslie Knope is my spirit animal, and you should all watch Parks and Rec. 

The Good News

As a (somewhat) seasoned choral director, I’ve now had experience dealing with money at my own program via fundraisers, fees, and field trip expenses. I’ve also planned plenty of trips and concerts.

Nothing has burst into flames.

Nobody died.

I've even been somewhat successful...


Plus, since I’ve been on the clinic committee, I’ve had experience taking up registrations and fees, so that’s one less thing to figure out from scratch!


So, I’m pretty sure I can do this. It might not be perfect this first time around, but I get bonus points for thinking happy thoughts, right?

Directors, What Would You Want To Know Prior To An Event?

Let’s do some crowd-sourcing!


If you've been in charge of something similar, what did you do to provide the best experience for everyone involved? If you’ve hosted an event  (we are hosting 9 across our entire state!!), what are your tips for making sure everything goes off without a hitch? Here’s what I’ve already got in mind:

  • Provide maps for each location with information about where to go for bus parking, registration and sign-in, rehearsal space, restrooms, etc.

  • Pictures of the rehearsal space

  • Pre-made flyer that participating schools can adopt to their own needs, and send home to parents.

  • Make a checklist for all of my site hosts to help keep them on track

  • Tentative schedule for the day of the event

  • Suggestions for restaurants in the area

  • Basic directions to sites from general areas


What else would you want to feel prepared to attend an event? What other hot tips do you have for me to make these clinics go as smoothly as possible? Middle school directors across the state of South Carolina will thank you for it!

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