Challenges of looking for a music teaching position in COVID-19

Challenges of looking for a music teaching position in COVID-19

calendar icon07 May 2020    user iconBy Brian G Reetz

We all understand the current challenges in the workforce due to COVID-19. There are people working from home, others have been furloughed, while still others unfortunately have lost their job entirely and now are unemployed.

Graduating students at the Glenn Korff School of Music have also faced the challenge of looking for full-time work, including doing interviews for jobs during the pandemic. We take a look at some undergrads of ours looking for jobs in Music Education. Some of them landed their new role prior to the lockdowns, while others have had their interviews done over zoom.

Austin Oltman, Goodrich Middle School, Vocal Music

I did four interviews.  Three were on zoom and one was on Microsoft Teams.  It was weird to not have to go anywhere and meet people in person, but mostly it was weird because I couldn’t see the facilities or neighborhoods when I interviewed.  I interviewed for Goodrich last Tuesday and they offered it to me on Wednesday and I accepted. I will be teaching 6-8 vocal music.

Ben Petrmichl, 6-12 Instrumental/Vocal Music Director position at Shelby-Rising City Schools

They had it in person March 19. The interview team was okay with having me in person which was a great opportunity because I was able to see some of the staff, the building, and the music classroom. The district was preparing for COVID-19 and they didn't have any students in the building. They offered it to me literally a week after the interview. I accepted it the day after.

Katelyn Hinderer, La Vista Middle School, Vocal Music

I interviewed in early January. I’m going to be the vocal music teacher at La Vista Middle School. I am also directing the Uptown Girls Show Choir at Millard West. I’m very excited. I accepted the teaching position on January 21. It was nice to be able to meet my future administrator in person and to see my future classroom. I also got a school-tour by students, which was fun. Because I was hired pretty early, I was able to go back to the school to meet with my administrator about plans for next year a few times, which I’m SUPER thankful for. Makes planning now a lot easier!

Casey Jo Allen, Elkhorn Middle School, Vocal Music

I’ll be at Elkhorn Middle School teaching 6-8 vocal music. I interviewed way back in February haha! I’m so glad I got to have a traditional interview experience. I was able to demonstrate what I’m capable of and was able to read the room as well. I also got to tell some classic Casey jokes and didn’t have to wait for the audio delay to hear people laughing.

Sasha Schneider Smoot, Elementary General Music Teacher at Omaha Benson West

Interviewing during the COVID pandemic had certainly been interesting. I had three building interviews over Zoom. One of the interviews, I met with just the principal and vice principal, the two after that, I was interviewed by at least six people via Zoom. Before these interviews, I would get ready in my interview attire, and find a quiet spot in my apartment with as plain of a background as I could find. Interviewing with other people in your home, who could be listening to you, makes it all the more nerve wracking. During the interview, there would occasionally be glitches, but luckily everyone is super understanding of that right now. Interviewing over Zoom is something that I hope I never have to do again. It's hard talking with a group of people not in person. I feel like I don't get a true picture of the building and people, and on the flip side, they don't get the whole picture of who I am as a teacher. I interviewed with them (OPS) pre-pandemic and they offered me an open contract which I declined. When the three Zoom interviews I had here in Lincoln were unsuccessful, I called OPS asking if they had any more jobs open, and they offered me this one!


On a bit of a lighter note, Glenn Korff School of Music Associate Professor of Practice in Music Education Danni Gilbert and her family put together this video during quarantine. Here is the Glenn Korff School of Music Music Education 2020 Commencement Processional:


Here is a list of GKSOM GRADUATES (Aug. 2019, Dec. 2019, May 2020)


Graduating Seniors - Bachelor of Arts (Dance)


Bower, Kelli


Graduating Seniors - Bachelor of Arts (Music)


**  Carroll, Liam

*    Dykes, Skyler

      Hadley, Benjamin

**  Nutter, Brock

      Rice, Brianna


Graduating Seniors – Bachelor of Music

      Barber, Andrew

**  Carter, Matthew

**  Conroy, Mackenzie

      Creal, Cooper

**  Gillespie, Alison

*    Goulet, Christopher

**  Holm, Claudia

      Kim, Hyunseok

      Larson, Vincent

      Mitchell, Isaac

**  Shvartcer, Eva

      Taylor, Travis (Dec)

      Young, Hunter (Aug)     

      White, William


Graduating Seniors – Bachelor of Music Education

       Allen, Casey

*    Arevalo, Asael

**  Benesch, Krista

      Beyer, Jaeden

      Boes, Claire

      Caberos, Nicolas

**  Eisenbeis, Justin

      Fang, Bosi

      Gorski, Kristen

**  Hinderer, Katelyn

*    Iverson, Daniel

      Jaapar, Aaron

      Joseph, Ashley (Dec)

      Knowles, Patrick

**  Lee, Jenna

**  Loutsch, Dominic

      Mathew, Dakota

      Moore, Samuel

      Oltman, Austin

      Petrmichl, Benjamin

      Schneider, Sashenka

*    Wood, Colin


Hixson-Lied College Recognition: *Distinction, **High Distinction, ***Highest Distinction


Graduating --Masters of Music (MM)


Buechner, Zachary

Ensign, Christina

Fehr, Lori (Aug)

Finnegan, Denise

Grosbach, Bryan

Howell, Eric

Ikpeama, Daniel

Johnson, Christian (Aug)

Martin, Ryan

Mohling, Justin

Movesian, Allison

Oshiro, Daniel

Pfanstiel, Shawn (Aug)

Raymond-Kolker, Louis

Rutherford, Ian

Trucke, Brandy

Viets, Connor

Weddel, Amanda (Aug)

Zajimovic, Leon


Graduating --Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA)


Cowley, Season

Gomez, Ruben

Granville, Kyle

Heerspink, Lee

Hiscock, Jared

Jarosz, Klaudia

Kondo, Ayaka

Li, Runkun

Madden, Kevin

Mersch, Katie

Montanari, Shiana

Zhang, Yin

Zhou, Kao