Virginia Maness is learning His way

August 1, 2012

Virginia Maness could not wait to arrive at Florida College. The declared Music major was eager to develop her musical skills and mature spiritually—as long as she didn’t have to meet anybody in the process.

“As a kid I was painfully shy—I would cry when I had to meet strangers. I was panicking the summer before coming to Florida College because I had no idea how I would ever make friends.”

So, at the start of her freshman year, she plunged herself into the social atmosphere of the college. “I promised myself that I would overcome this fear,” she says. “I am so thankful I did because the connections I have made and the opportunities they presented have enriched my life. People became less scary as I became less scared!”

After overcoming this initial obstacle, excelling academically proved to be easy. In fact, the friendships she made were at times the source of her motivation. “This degree is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done,” she says. “There were several times I almost quit. Thanks to a couple of fellow music majors, I buckled down and learned to work through my challenges.”

Virginia found her independent studies in Piano Pedagogy to be particularly helpful and believes they will be instrumental in fulfilling her aspirations of one day opening her own piano studio. Her natural inclination toward music earned her last year’s Activity Award in Piano.

Virginia continued to branch out from her comfort zone in taking Aural Theory, Conducting and Music Technology classes—all socially intensive courses. She went on to win the Academic Award for Communication and has since elected to minor in the subject.

Though she was initially hesitant to step into the social spectrum, Virginia now finds herself highly involved in several social endeavors. She is currently vice president of the National Association for Music Educators (NAfME) and was recently elected secretary of the student body for the 2012–2013 school year.

“Learning to branch out has given me a greater confidence in who I am. I’ll always remember how the friendships and activities here helped me grow.”

That’s how Virginia is learning His way.