New face in music department

Beyond the usual sounds of percussion instruments and singing sopranos, the music department at Castleton State College seems a little off tune.One former professor has left the school and a new chairman has been appointed.

Jon Lorentz is in the process of finishing his doctorate and is no longer working for Castleton. And while Ronald Sherwin remains with the college as a professor, he has been replaced after three years as department chairman by Glenn Giles.

According to Giles, it is his understanding that Sherwin stepped down as chairman of the department. Sherwin says that is not the case.

When asked about his no longer being the chairman and his future at Castleton, Sherwin said that he “preferred not to comment.” He did, however, express his feelings towards the college.

“This is my alma mater,” Sherwin said. “I would never want to say anything about the college that I love.”

According to Sherwin, one would find it difficult at this time to find out anything more regarding the reasons for the change.

Giles is also a Castleton alum, and was in fact the first person to ever graduate from the college with a music education degree. He did so in 1973.

“I’ve stayed in the Rutland area my entire career and I’ve had an interest in the program since I graduated,” Giles said.

Giles has been an adjunct for five years and spent 14 years overseeing the Fine Arts Program in Rutland city.

According to Giles, he is the head of instrumentals and Sherwin is head of vocal music.

“My plan for this year is to get a feeling of what’s going on,” Giles said. “Dr. Sherwin has done a wonderful job. We need more attention spent on instrumental.

The department did not feel any different according to Jay Hilfiger, a semi-retired and teaches in the music department part-time. He teaches arranging, music theory, woodwind quintet and trumpet. Though he admits, “It’s also pretty early.”

Nate DeYoung, a senior at Castleton, has gotten to know the former chairman pretty well during his years as a student. According to DeYoung, he’s had positive experiences with Sherwin.

“He’s really welcoming to his students,” DeYoung said. “He explains things so they can enjoy all types of music. Dr. Sherwin establishes good relationships.”

Giles is poised and prepared to help the department that he has had a strong interest in for over three decades.

“I’m here because I want to see the music education program be strong and I want to help produce the next generation of music professors,” Giles said. “I want to help teach, instruct and inspire.

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