Department of Music

Part of the rhythm of life

You were born with it – an undeniable connection to music. You feel the pull of a melody and the pulse of a rhythm. It’s likely you wake up with songs in your head, sing in the shower, have your earbuds in most of the time, and often are found fiddling with instruments. Music is part of your life. And the question is, how will you make it part of your future?

Whether you just want to learn to play an instrument, love to perform, or want to make music your career, we have the options and opportunities to help you achieve your goals. We know that music students often are high achievers and have other interests, so you can easily pair a major or minor in music with another degree providing plenty of opportunities no matter where your career takes you.

  • 100% of music ed graduates employed in first year
  • 77% of music majors study abroad
  • 56 Saint Mary's students in Notre Dame Marching Band

Become a music teacher

If you see yourself one day teaching music we have the perfect program for you. With over 700 hours of field experience and a 100% employment rate, our music education graduates are enjoying successful careers while sharing their passion for music. You’ll take classes from both the departments of music and education to learn everything from music fundamentals and how to teach various instruments, to child psychology and curriculum development.

Expand your studies across the world

While music is a universal language, there are strong cultural influences and differences found around the world. At Saint Mary’s, you’ll have the opportunity to study music (and life!) from the vantage points of other countries by studying abroad. With over 30 programs to choose from, you can decide to spend a week, summer, or even a semester as an exchange student.

Katherine Freed '18

"It wasn’t a compromise. I knew that I could do everything I wanted at Saint Mary’s."
— Katherine Freed '18, Music Major–PreMed

>>Read More of Katherine's Story

Will your name be in lights someday?

While some students fear performing in front of others, we know that many of you absolutely love the chance to be on stage. For you, there’s something magical about the bustle backstage, the jitters of opening night, and the applause of a crowd when the curtains come down. As a Saint Mary’s student, you can audition with some of the best to be in our concert band or collegiate choir, join the Notre Dame orchestra, land a role in musical theatre, or perform alongside the South Bend Symphony. With a dozen performance opportunities each year, you’ll find plenty of ways to get involved and build your resume as a performer.

Join the tradition

Saint Mary's students welcome as members of the Notre Dame Marching bandThe Notre Dame Band of the Fighting Irish is America’s oldest university band in continuous existence – and you can be part of it. More than 50 Saint Mary’s students are members of the Notre Dame marching band each year. Along with bandmates from Notre Dame and Holy Cross College, they perform in front of 80,000 Irish fans on campus, travel to away games, and support the Fighting Irish at bowl games. Auditions are held each fall for any interested Saint Mary’s student. There are no fees and all travel accommodations are generally covered for away games including transportation, lodging, and meals.