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University of Cincinnati

Vivian Tsang: There's Music in Her Future

Date: June 4, 2001
By: Dawn Fuller
Photos by Dottie Stover
Phone: (513) 556-1823
Archive: Profiles Archive

Vivian Tsang of Springfield, Va., is one of two graduates who were awarded a full scholarship in the University of Cincinnati's very first Cincinnatus Scholarship competition. Back in 1997, Cincinnatus I provided $6 million in awards to attract the nation's brightest and talented students to campus to compete in a day of academic exercises with their peers. Prizes were awarded based on the student's academic performance, leadership, teamwork and commitment to community service. Tsang was one of the top Cincinnatus scholars who received a full $60,000, four-year award to the university.

Vivian Tsang

Her excellence in talent and academics continued through her double major at the College-Conservatory of Music (CCM) and the communications program in the McMicken College of Arts and Sciences. Tsang is graduating summa cum laude and will serve as a student marshal for CCM. She also belongs to Phi Beta Kappa, the Golden Key Honor Society and was named to Who's Who Among College Students.

Vivian Tsang

Back when the 21-year-old piano performance major was considering where she would receive her higher education, Tsang, a salutatorian for Annandale High School in Virginia, was the number one prospect for Indiana University's piano performance program and among her college considerations were Harvard and Yale. The international reputation of CCM, and the information on Cincinnatus in her application, led her to the University of Cincinnati to stay.

Because she was so far away from home, Tsang usually had to wait until holiday breaks to visit her family. But she says she discovered a new family waiting for her at UC. "I lived on the CCM floor in Siddall Hall, and all of the freshmen had the same classes. I remember the toughest class was music history. They'd play a segment of a piece for you and you would have to name it. Around finals, you'd hear music all over the floor, and we would all try to name the pieces.

Vivian Tsang

"I loved my experience at UC. I think the people...all the friends I met, will be the most memorable. At UC, I felt myself develop as a person. I know a lot more about the world. My communications degree helped me see so many perspectives and CCM improved me tremendously as a pianist."

Tsang will attend the New England Conservatory of Music in the fall to begin the master's degree program in piano performance, and says she has future dreams of operating her own music school.

Meanwhile, a new class of Cincinnatus Scholars will become freshmen at UC this fall. The prize money for the competition has grown to more than $11 million.


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