Student Profile: Jeffrey Brown ’07
Jeffrey Brown of Colts Neck, N.J., hails from the East Coast,
but his family is not unfamiliar with Hope College in western Michigan.
“Actually, I’m a seventh-generation Hope student,” he
says. “I’ve had six generations before me and over
55 relatives attend Hope throughout the years.”
Family tradition was not the only influence on Brown’s decision
to attend Hope, however. He says, “I liked the school and
knew the music department was good.” Brown is double majoring
in instrumental and vocal education. He sings, plays the tuba and
piano, and participates in a variety of Hope ensembles such as
the Wind Symphony and the Chapel Choir.
“The performance aspect is fun,” he says. Chapel
Choir has provided Brown with the opportunity to travel on tour
to the Eastern United States, France, and the Netherlands. Performance
and involvement on campus is exciting as well. Reflecting on one
of the Wind Symphony’s recent concerts, he says, “It’s
a lot of great music, and it’s a great ensemble to be a part
Brown’s experience with the Hope tradition of the Nykerk
Cup competition added an entirely different dimension to his musical
involvement. Nykerk, first held in 1936, is an all-female showcase
of singing, acting, and oration. Men get involved by becoming the
supportive morale staff that helps build the sets, organize behind
the scenes, and otherwise encourage the participants.
It has had an enduring impact. “I met a lot of my closest
friends through Nykerk,” says Brown. “I liked being
part of a tradition that’s been going on for so long.”
While his musical involvements are important to him, Brown also
values the variety that a liberal arts college provides.
“I like other classes, such as Spanish and religion and
math that make you a little more well-rounded; it’s nice
to have something else thrown in there,” he says.
The Centurian fraternity has been another important part of his
experience outside of music.
“It’s a bunch of good guys,” he says. “There
are many of us with many different majors. It’s a neat cross-section.
I’m the only music major. It’s just fun to be in an
organization with a whole bunch of different people like that.”
As he looks towards his own possible future as a high school music
educator, Brown appreciates the range of experiences he is getting
at Hope College.
“My professors do a great job of preparing us for all sorts
of different situations,” he says. “It really is a
good place to help you grow as a person.”
This profile was written by Melissa Sexton, a 2005 Hope
College graduate from Kalamazoo, Mich., for the 2005-06 Hope
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