Madison Bazylewicz ?26

Madison Bazylewicz

Class Year



Waukesha, WI


Music Education and Music

At Carthage, Madison Bazylewicz ’26 is majoring in music education and music with an emphasis in clarinet performance. On campus, she’s involved in the co-ed music fraternity, Lambda Kappa, as well as the Carthage Pep Band. Music has always been a part of her life, as she has been playing clarinet since fifth grade, tuba since her junior year of high school, and saxophone since her senior year of high school. 

Madison has had the opportunity to participate in a J-Term study tour to Japan as a member of the Carthage Wind Orchestra.

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“Everyone here really wants to see you succeed. So many faculty members are in your corner, ready to help. Knowing there are so many people here for you is a great feeling.”

Madison Bazylewicz, ’26

Why Carthage?

“I chose Carthage because of how welcoming the Music Department faculty was when I came on campus. During my scholarship audition, I was so nervous. The faculty in my audition did a great job assuring me I was doing great and that if I wanted to be at Carthage, then there was a spot for me. I loved the opportunities available for students, even as underclassmen. I could be in the top band right away as a freshman. I was invited into the Carthage Philharmonic Orchestra by the second semester. Being in those top groups would have never happened at a big school.”

Faculty mentors

“Our director of instrumental activities, Professor James Ripley, truly impacted my time here. Being able to study conducting with him has been amazing. He comes with so much knowledge, and I get to learn so much about the different techniques he has learned. I truly feel like I am being taught information that will be useful beyond my time here. Taking classes with him offers a different set of knowledge, and I don’t know where else I could get it. He truly cares about each of his students and gets to know them all.”

Favorite class

“My favorite class so far has been Choral Pedagogy for Instrumentalists, which is taught by Professor Peter Dennee. As someone who has never been in a choir before, this class teaches about the fundamentals of a choir classroom and relates it to many of the familiar principles in a band classroom. It allows us to sing in a very supportive environment. I find it very interesting learning about the many components that go into teaching choir, and I am glad I am taking this class. It is helping me feel more prepared for a future in teaching.”

Toughest class

“My toughest class has been Keyboard Skills I. Since I came in with no background in piano playing, this class has proven very challenging. I have to take a lot of outside time to practice and ask my peers questions. It has been hard, but I am getting through it.”

Career goal

“My career goal is to teach high school band in a school with a marching band. However, my time at Carthage has changed some of my goals. I can now see myself teaching middle school band or even orchestra at some level. It is crazy because I don’t think I would have ever said that three years ago. High school still sits at the top because I loved my time in marching band back in high school and can see myself in that element.”

Favorite spot on campus

“My favorite spot is anywhere I can hear the waves crashing. Sometimes, that’s in my dorm reading a book, and other times, it’s outside sitting in one of the iconic red chairs along our beautiful lakefront. I also love Starbucks, sitting over there and getting some homework done or chatting with a friend. It’s close to the Johnson Arts Center, and it’s a nice, easy walk to grab a coffee or snack.”

Favorite memory

“I love bingo nights. These are some of my favorite events throughout the semester. It is a great way to take a break from practicing, have fun with friends, and hope to win some fun prizes. Even if you don’t win, it is still a fun time. I also love Homecoming. The parade is always super fun, and the concert at the night’s end is always one to remember. It kicks off the year, and it is always great to see everyone’s family.”

Best study tip

“Get out of your dorm. Study in a lounge, the library, or even outside if it’s nice enough. I am not productive in my room, so I like to go to the Hedberg Library or the Johnson Art Center to study. This forces me to finish my work, and then I can return to my room to relax. I would suggest using the tutors in your class, if they have them. Sometimes, even if you think you are doing fine in class, the tutor can help you understand something differently, and it might give you a different outlook on a topic. Make sure to take time for yourself, too. You can’t be studying 24/7. Take time to rest, hang with friends, and always make sure you have time to eat. Fueling your body is so important.”

Advice for other students in your major?

“My biggest piece of advice is to be confident that this is what you want to do and that you are willing to work for it. It isn’t always easy. There will be times when you wonder if you can do it, but trust yourself and know it is what you want, and you can do it.”

What would your 8-year-old self think of you now?

“I don’t think eight-year-old me would believe I had stuck with music and wanted to teach it for the rest of my life. I always wanted to help people, and teaching will still allow me to do that, but at eight-years-old, I thought I would be a doctor or a vet. My ideas have changed as I have grown older. I am so happy with what I’ve accomplished so far, but I still sometimes wonder how my life would be if I had gone into the medical world.”