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To view our 2013-2014 Catalog, please click here.

This site offers general information about lessons, classes, ensembles; the Music Institute's policies and procedures; and information about location and parking.  There is a lot of information here. If your questions remain unanswered, please do not hesitate to contact the office either by phoning (443) 518-4297 or by emailing jbailey@howardcc.edu.

GENERAL INFORMATION ABOUT 
LESSONS, CLASSES AND ENSEMBLES

The lessons, classes and ensembles offered by The Music Institute have been designed to meet the needs and interests of our students. Whether you are a very young beginner experiencing formal music training for the first time, a high school student preparing for conservatory studies, an adult wishing to return to the instrument you set aside after high school, someone wishing to play your instrument along with other musicians in an ensemble setting or a music lover wanting to know more about music and be a more informed listener, The Music Institute has many offerings just for you. If you don’t see what you want, please call the Institute office at (443) 518-4297.

PRIVATE LESSONS
Private lessons in all orchestral and band instruments, voice, and piano are offered to students of all ages and levels of playing ability. Students can start private lessons anytime during the year.

Recommended Beginning Age of Student:

Piano, Strings, Ukulele5 years
Guitar8 years
Woodwinds, Brass, Percussion9-10 years
Voice14 years

LESSON LENGTHS
The Music Institute offers weekly or bi-weekly lessons in 30, 45, or 60 minutes.

INSTRUMENT/MATERIALS/PRACTICE FACILITIES
Students enrolled in individual instruction must have their own instruments and/or have regular access to an instrument for practice unless other arrangements are made with the teacher. If required, students should purchase any additional materials as soon as possible in order to facilitate instruction. There are practice rooms available for our music students for regular practice time at HCC. Instructions and regulations are posted on practice room doors and online. Students wishing to reserve a regular practice time must go to the Arts & Humanities Division Office, HVPA 200, during office hours and show proof of registration or a Practice Room Pass (available at the TMI Office).

PAIR LESSONS
Two students with similar ability levels can be paired with a teacher for a semi-private lesson. Each participant must sign up for a minimum of one section. For each (one) session that a participant registers, the number of pair lessons will be eight (8) weeks. Tuition will be the same for a private lesson, divided evenly between the two students.  Pair lessons can be arranged with the permission of the instructor.

CLASSES AND ENSEMBLES
The Music Institute offers a variety of classes and ensembles. Each class and ensemble is designed with our students’ and the community’s interests in mind. This gives students the opportunity to learn important ensemble skills and take advantage of many occasions to perform while experiencing the joy of making music with other musicians. Students are grouped together by age and ability level to foster a nurturing environment. Ensemble coaching by TMI faculty is first-rate. Our faculty members regularly perform in ensembles including the Accordare Piano Duo, the Gemini Piano Trio, the HCC Jazz Faculty Ensemble, and the Octtava Piano Duo.  For a complete listing of available classes and ensembles, please click here.

The Music Institute reserves the right to cancel classes that do not meet minimum enrollment requirements.

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POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

REGISTRATION

IMPORTANT: All Students must be registered and have made payment, whether partial or full, before beginning lessons, classes, or ensembles.

New students must contact the TMI office for teacher assignments. Returning students may contact their teachers directly or they may ask TMI staff to have the teacher contact them.

All students must have a current Student Information Sheet on file at TMI office and should notify TMI of any changes. New Student Information Sheets can be found in the Music Suite, in the TMI Office, or by clicking here.

All students must have a current Consent Form on file in TMI office (the student must complete a Consent Form for each registration). This may be filled out with the Student Information Sheet. It states that the registration has been approved; contains a Media Permission Statement and a Waiver of Responsibility; and must include a student/responsible party signature.  Consent Forms are also available in the Music Suite, in the TMI Office, or by clicking here.

Students must be registered BY THEIR TEACHERS.  This can take place at any time during the year, although there are specific registration dates that correspond to the sections that are being registered (see TMI Sections below).  After parental/responsible party approval, the registration form is submitted to the TMI office for processing.

Once the TMI office has processed the registration, an e-invoice with payment information is sent to the student/responsible party via e-mail. A paper bill is mailed monthly by HCC's Finance Department according to the billing schedule (see HCC Billing Dates below).

Lessons may not begin until payment for the first section has been received.  Ensembles must be paid for in full before a student may participate. Teachers will be notified by TMI staff when lessons may begin. 

Office hours are Monday through Friday, 9:30 am to 4:30 pm.

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AVAILABLE PRIVATE LESSON OPTIONS

All Music Institute students must register for lessons in groups of four, called a section. Each section is roughly equivalent to the month of the year with the corresponding number. For example, a student may register for sections 9-12 and these lessons would take place in September through December. Within any given academic year, a student may register for up to 12 sections. The teacher is responsible for submitting the registration once the student and teacher, together, have decided on length and number of lessons. Lessons are available in half-hour, 45-minute, and hour lengths. For section dates, please see the chart, labeled The Music Institute Sections, below.

Trial Lessons for New Students

We offer, to new students, the option of choosing a 4-week trial period before committing to an extended lesson plan (multiple sections). For questions, contact the TMI office.

The Music Institute Sections

The table below shows the dates for each of our sections.

Term

Section #

Start Date

End Date

2013A2

009

09/01/13

09/28/13

2013A2

010

09/29/13

10/26/13

2013A2

011

10/27/13

11/23/13

2013A2

012

11/24/13

12/21/13

2014A1

001

01/05/14

02/01/14

2014A1

002

02/02/14

03/01/14

2014A1

003

03/02/14

03/29/14

2014A1

004

03/30/14

04/26/14

2014A1

005

04/27/14

05/24/14

2014A1

006

05/25/14

06/21/14

2014A2

007

06/22/14

07/19/14

2014A2

008

07/20/14

08/16/14

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TUITION

Private Instruction:
Tuition is based on the instructor’s rate for either a 1/2 hour, 3/4 hour, or one hour lesson multiplied by the number of lessons. Tuition for a 1/2 hour private lesson ranges from $30.10 to $41.45.

Individualized Chamber Coaching:
Ensembles coaching schedules for 2 or more students are arranged between the instructor and the students. Please inquire with the TMI staff for further details.

Ensembles and Classes
Please click here for complete descriptions, times, and tuition. Tuition and fees for classes and ensembles must be paid in full before the student may participate. Payment for classes and ensembles may not be broken into multiple payments.

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PAYMENT PROCEDURES

AT LEAST one section's tuition and fees are due before lessons can begin.

ALL costs associated with classes or ensembles are due prior to the first meeting.

The Music Institute office CANNOT accept or process payments.

Forms and payments may be submitted in the following ways:

  • Taken in person to the Cashier’s Window or it can be placed in the drop safe in Room 222 of the Rouse Company Building Student Services Hall (RCF Building) located outside the Cashier's office.
  • Mailed to: Howard Community College
    Attn: Cashier’s Office, RCF 212

    10901 Little Patuxent Parkway
    Columbia, MD 21044
    Please Note: Mailed forms must be received by the payment deadline.
  • The CashNet link found on the e-Invoice can be accessed for online credit card payments. For recurring CashNet payments, please click HERE for instructions.
  • Registrants/Responsible Parties can call the Cashier’s Office at (443) 518-1862 to make a payment via credit card. This number is also located on the student’s e-Invoice.

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BILLING & PAYMENT SCHEDULE

If you elect to pay your bill on a monthly basis in person or by phone, it must also be done according to the schedule below. There are no additional fees for making payments in installments.

The HCC Finance Department processes bills for all unpaid balances and mails them two weeks prior to their due date. This bill will be for the ENTIRE AMOUNT OWED PER TERM (i.e., 2013A2, 2014A1), not for the entire school year. To avoid confusion, refer to the e-invoice for information about monthly payment amounts and due dates.

If the minimum payment is unpaid by the due date, HCC may invoke its right to collect delinquent payments, possibly (in extreme cases) using a collection agency to do so. The Registrar may then elect to deregister the student from that set of private lessons and the teacher would be obligated to cease teaching that student for any unpaid lessons.

Please note that Finance processes bills on the morning of the Billing Dates in the table below. Late registrations will not receive a bill until the next Billing Date. The full unpaid amount will be listed on the bill for one complete Term (6 month period). Please pay your prearranged monthly payment as listed on your e-invoice.

Term

Section #

Billing Date

Due Date

2013A2

009

08/16/13

08/30/13

2013A2

010

09/13/13

09/27/13

2013A2

011

10/11/13

10/25/13

2013A2

012

11/08/13

11/22/13

2014A1

001

12/20/13

01/03/14

2014A1

002

01/17/14

01/31/14

2014A1

003

02/14/14

02/28/14

2014A1

004

03/14/14

03/28/14

2014A1

005

04/11/14

04/25/14

2014A1

006

05/09/14

05/23/14

2014A2

007

06/06/14

06/20/14

2014A2

008

07/03/14

07/18/14

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FEES & PENALTIES

For music lessons, there is only one type of fee assessed, a per-section fee. The amount of the fee is $10.00 per section regardless of the length of the lesson. For ensembles, the fee is $20.00 per ensemble. Some classes have an additional materials fee. The e-invoice clearly states both tuition and fee totals and outlines payment methods. 

Most of our teachers depend on their respective teaching load as their primary source of income. It is the policy of The Music Institute that early withdrawal from contracted lessons will incur a four lesson penalty. Please be aware that timely payments allow the administration to make sure our teachers are paid on a regular basis. If one wishes to drop sections due to illness, financial constraints, or relocation, the request must be made in writing to TMI. This may be done through either email or postal mail. The same penalty expressed above applies in these cases.

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CashNet Payments

For private lessons, patrons have the option of paying the full amount of tuition or paying in monthly installments through CashNet. The Monthly Installment option is only available if you are registering for more than one section. A link to the website is found in the e-invoice. Once the website is accessed, follow the on-site directions; if you have difficulties, you may click here for step-by-step instructions or contact the TMI office for assistance. If you make monthly payments, payments must adhere to the billing due dates listed on the e-invoice and set forth in the table below. There are no additional fees for paying through CashNet.

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REFUNDS

For Classes & Ensembles

If any class or ensemble has insufficient enrollment, The Music Institute reserves the right to cancel the class and will refund all tuition. There are no refunds for classes, ensembles, or individualized coaching sessions that are in progress.

For Private Lessons

The Music Institute understands that situations may arise where the suspension of lessons becomes necessary. Should you experience such circumstances and desire to withdraw from lessons, your request, stating the circumstances that make the withdrawal necessary, must be submitted to the TMI office in writing. Verbal requests will not be accepted. Fees are nonrefundable. Also, as many of our faculty depend on their respective teaching incomes as a large source of their total income, any granted withdrawal will still require that the teacher have a “four lesson cushion”, unless the instructor waives this stipulation, which must also be made in writing. Please see above for information about penalties. Verbal waivers from the teacher will also not be accepted.

Notice of withdrawal from private instruction and request for refunds must be made in writing to The Music Institute office for approval. Verbal requests will not be accepted. Fees and materials costs are nonrefundable.

For private instruction, there are no refunds within a section that is currently running. Refund requests made one month prior to the Start Date of the next section may be granted a full tuition refund. Please reference the TMI Section Chart above.

Refund checks will be issued by the HCC business office within 21 business days after the written request is received by the Music Institute office. For new students, this policy will be effective after the four week trial period.

Absences/Tardiness

Regular attendance is very important for students to fully develop their musical abilities. Students are charged for all lessons or classes for which they register, including those missed through student absence. As a courtesy, students are expected to directly notify their teachers of any impending absence from lessons. Instructors are not required to make up lessons missed by students.

Lessons canceled by the teacher will be rescheduled. Lessons canceled due to weather or other emergency will be rescheduled if possible. The Music Institute follows the school closing policies of Howard Community College. HCC’s weather emergency closings will be aired on Baltimore and Washington television stations affiliated with the major networks and on area radio stations between 6 and 9 am. If HCC classes are canceled anytime after the college opens, announcements will be aired in the same manner. A recorded message will also be placed on the college’s main telephone number, 443-518-1000 and a message posted on the college homepage, www.howardcc.edu.

Tardy students cannot be guaranteed full lesson time. Teachers must stay on schedule for subsequent students.

A weekly attendance report will be maintained by the teacher and student, detailing lesson times, lengths, and any other pertinent details. It is imperative that both the teacher and student maintain good records using the Lesson Chart provided by the Music Institute office. In the case of any disputes about the number or length of lessons given and received, the Lesson Chart (which should have identical information) will be the accepted reference document rather than personal schedule books.

Change of Instructor

TMI's four week trial lesson period for beginning students allows both students and instructors ample opportunity to decide if they want to continue working together, or if the student wishes to continue lessons at all. We strive to pair students and teachers together to achieve the best results, but we view the process as a professional obligation on the part of both the teacher and the student.

In other cases, if a change is desired, student/parents must first discuss this with the current teacher, and then the office must be notified, in writing. Students desiring to change teachers must give one month’s notice – no exceptions. Most teachers rely on their private teaching as their primary source of income and it is both unfair and unprofessional to end the teacher/student association abruptly without proper notice. Please refer to the Penalties section above for our policies regarding abrupt withdrawal.

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LOCATION & PARKING

Howard Community College is conveniently located just a couple of miles from the intersection of US Route 29 and MD Route 175. The Music Institute is in the Peter and Elizabeth Horowitz Visual and Performing Arts Center on the Howard Community College campus. Directions to Howard Community College can be found on the college website. A map of the campus is available here.

Music Institute students may park in any lot marked Visitors. Parking is also available in the West Parking Garage; no permit needed. When parking on these or any other lots on campus, please be considerate of our handicapped students and refrain from parking in spaces reserved solely for their use.

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