How Does an MFA in Music Composition Benefit You As a Teacher?

Thinking about getting your MFA in Music Composition? Here's how it can benefit your teaching career long-term.

Advance your practice.

As a teacher, you will benefit from our MFA in Music Composition in multiple ways.

Ken saxophone


Your teaching practice will be enriched and enlivened as you pursue your own studies.

“The coaching I get from my mentor has informed the way I approach similar projects and coach my own students.” 

“Different approaches to writing have honed my analytic skills and that knowledge gives me more to draw on when presenting various composition and orchestration models.”

“Every time I've returned from a residency, I've found that I have new ideas and knowledge to share that help spur my creativity.”

Your personal creative practice will be strengthened and energized as you focus on your own music.

“I have renewed fervor for practice and musicality. After every residency, I find myself more energetic and excited.”

“It is a great chance to expand your personal art while being a music teacher.”

You can complete your MFA in two years while working full-time.

“This program works well for teachers because there is minimal time away from work, you set your own study schedule, and you can complete your degree in a shorter amount of time than if you were to take one or two classes at a time.”

“This program works perfectly for me. I can work on projects in such a way that I can move at my own pace and not otherwise disrupt my home and professional life.”

You can benefit financially once you have earned your MFA degree.

“Having my MFA will open more opportunities for me to teach at a higher level and will bump me up on the pay scale.”

"I see myself having a body of music that is marketable for me to expand my current position, allowing me to teach successfully in other areas.”

For more information, including faculty listings, admissions and tuition info and more, visit our program page:

Increase your lifetime earnings.

An MFA can dramatically increase your annual, career, and lifetime earnings as a public school teacher.
17% more over lifetime
Compared to a BFA, MFA degree holders earn 17% more money* over the course of their careers through both earned and retirement income.


*Outcome based on three sample scenarios with variable age, career status, retirement date, and life expectancy

Many teachers receive financial assistance to help fund their MFA studies, often directly from their employers. On average, those who borrow realize a compensation higher than the rate of their loans within two years.  
The degree pays for itself.


Learn More

To determine if the low-residency MFA in Music Composition program at Vermont College of Fine Arts is right for you, let us help! We're here to answer any questions you have.