Congrats to CCM doctoral candidate Alyssa Morris, who is one of 90 students in the U.S. and Canada selected to receive this year’s Scholar Award from the P.E.O. Sisterhood. This one-time merit-based award in the amount of $15,000 is for women in pursuit of a doctoral-level degree who have high academic achievement and potential for having positive impacts on society.

Alyssa Morris is pursuing her Doctor of Musical Arts degree under CCM Professor of Oboe, Dr. Mark Ostoich. She received her undergraduate and masters degrees in oboe performance from Brigham Young University, where she studied with Dr. Geralyn Giovannetti.

As a performer, Morris has achieved national acclaim. She was awarded first place in the Utah State Fair Young Artist Performance Competition in 2004, 2005 and 2006. She received first place in the Utah MTNA Young Artists performance competition in 2005, and second place in the Western United States Regional MTNA Young Artists performance competition in 2005. In August of 2014, Morris performed one of her own compositions at the International Double Reed Convention in New York City. Morris has frequently played with the Utah Lyric Opera, the Timpanogos Symphony Orchestra, the Utah Baroque Ensemble, the Wasatch Winds and the Orchestra at Temple Square. Morris was also a member of the Utah Wind Symphony, a professional wind band based in Salt Lake City.

As a composer, Morris has been commissioned to write music for the Arizona State University faculty wind quartet, the Eastern Kentucky University faculty wind trio, Brigham Young University’s Sundance Trio, Ohio University’s Athenia Chamber Ensemble, a Trevco Music Publishing consortium of bassoonists from around the world and the Brigham Young University Symphonic Band. Her piece Four Personalities for oboe and piano has been performed at three of the International Double Reed Conventions since 2008. Her works have been presented at the Society of Composers Inc. National Convention and the International Double Reed Convention. Morris had three of her compositions performed at the 2014 IDRS convention in New York City. Morris’ music has been recorded on the Centaur and MSR Classics labels and published by Trevco Music Publishing.

About the P.E.O. Scholars Award

Founded in 1869 at the Iowa Wesleyan College, the P.E.O. Sisterhood is a philanthropic educational organization dedicated to supporting higher education for women. The P.E.O. Scholar Awards were established in 1991 and are one-time, competitive, merit-based awards for women of the United States and Canada who are pursuing a doctoral level degree at an accredited college or university. In addition to recognizing and encouraging excellence in higher education, these awards provide partial support for study and research for women who will make significant contributions in their varied fields of endeavor. Priority is given to women who are well established in their programs, study or research. The numbers of awards are determined each year in accordance with the funds available. The current maximum award is $15,000.

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Story by CCM graduate student Charlotte Kies

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