Steven Edwards: Music business program leader attends Salzburg Global Seminar

Delgado Community College is proud to announce that Steven Edwards, associate professor and coordinator of the music and music business programs attended a Salzburg Global Seminar, recently in Salzburg, Austria. The week-long session held at the historical Schloss Leopoldskron palace, focused on Education for Global Citizenship. The seminar provided techniques for making teaching a more international experience and makes participating faculty members more aware of global issues and world affairs. “The program is designed to inspire and empower faculty to come back and be agents to get their home institutions to incorporate globalization into their curricula and activities,” said Edwards.

Edwards has taught at Delgado since 1997, coordinating the music program, conducting the college chorus and teaching a variety of courses including music, voice, jazz appreciation, music literature, and musical theatre. In addition to his departmental commitments, he serves as the director of the Symphony Chorus of New Orleans, the principal chorus of the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra.

Edwards has a greater appreciation for the history of globalization and is hoping to continue the conversation with his colleagues at Delgado. Although the program dealt primarily with political and sociological concepts, Edwards has an interest in some of these issues and was able to find something that he could use directly in his courses. “Most of the political issues that we face in the world today transcend borders,” said Edwards.

Some of the various presentations were facilitated by American administrators and some by European administrators. “In one of the seminar sessions, we had a fellow who is the music director of a jazz radio station in San Jose, California talk about jazz as the ultimate fusion music, and jazz as a fusion--not only of the American cultures, but world cultures ripping that American theme,” said Edwards. He plans to apply that lesson in the jazz appreciation courses that he teaches during the 20th century sections.

Founded in 1947, the Salzburg Global Seminar has educated 23,000 Fellows from 150 countries. The Salzburg Global Seminar is an independent educational institution committed to global understanding. “The program basically looked at international affairs and cultural affairs from a variety of perspectives, and what that inevitably means is subjecting a bunch of American college teachers to looking at the world the way the European Union does and the way the United Nations does and if there was one theme to the whole thing, it was perhaps the fact that most of the rest of the world doesn’t buy into the notion of American exceptionalism--the idea that we make the rules and follow the ones that we want to,” said Edwards. “A great deal of it was looking at the United States from the view point of Europe and the rest of the world. There were people there from the United Nations and from various European Unions and government agencies.”

Edwards who has been to Austria several times, speaks German and says that Austria is a haven for musicians. “Salzburg was the birthplace of Composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Leopoldskron is where “The Sound of Music” was filmed, it is home of the annual Salzburg Festival, and it where the Mozarteum is located, which is one of the big universities for music—they have a huge musical program there,” said Edwards.  

“It was a great opportunity for collegiate interaction, the quality of the colleagues I met was wonderful, the quality of the faculty was first rate, it was intellectually stimulating, and on top of that-- the food, the drinks, and the lodging were really very nice,” said Edwards.

Fifteen students and 20 faculty members and administrators from other Louisiana community and technical colleges participated in the Global Citizenship Program in Salzburg. This is the fifth year that Louisiana Community and Technical College System (LCTCS) colleges are participating in the Salzburg program. Funding for the program has been made available by the LCTCS Foundation, AT&T, Dow Chemical, and Student Government Associations from around the state.