Dear Family & Friends,
As many of you know, there has been a change of pace here in Boston. On Monday, April 15th, the world-renowned Boston Marathon was attacked with two explosions. Being an employee at 755 Boylston Street, I witnessed the second attack on our patio. The events are still somewhat of a blur to me, but all I know is that I am very fortunate to come out of this tragic event completely unscathed. It seems as though the reason I was one to witness this horrifying occurrence was to help those who were not as fortunate as me; Both at the time and onward. Therefore, 8% of whatever I raise will go towards Boston relief. If you want to learn more about my story and how you may be able to help, please read on. Otherwise, please keep those affected by what has happened in your thoughts and prayers; For Boston needs it now more than ever.
I am currently a student at Berklee College of Music and I have recently been offered the internship of my dreams of at Parlor Studio for the summer of 2013 in Nashville, Tennessee. To pursue this internship and receive academic credit, I am required to register through Berklee's Experimental Learning Department.The catch: The Experimental Learning Program is only 2 credits. To attain Financial Aid, I must be enrolled in at least six credits, which is not possible at this time because I will not be in Boston over the summer to attend courses, and Berklee offers very limited online courses towards my major.
As fewer of you of you know, I am currently supporting my way through school by working anywhere between 20 to 35 hours per week to make monthly tuition loan payments due to being ineligible for deferment. Ultimately, I am so very grateful for the opportunity to attend one of the country's most prestigious music schools, but being a full-time student on top of being an (almost) full-time employee has definitely presented its challenges. I feel as though this opportunity to be an intern at one of Music Row's distinguished studios has been a blessing and a reminder that all of this hard work is, in fact, paying off.
So after working so incredibly hard to pursue my passion, why let something like the bill stop me from getting even closer? That's where you come in. My tuition bill for the summer will be approximately $2,854 ($1,293/credit and a $268 Part-Time Student Comprehensive fee). So why the extra $2,346? My student loan payments are approximately $700 a month. Like I've mentioned, I am currently working anywhere between 20 to 35 hours per week to make these payments. With this internship, I am looking to experience as much as possible. Ultimately, the $2,346 would go towards making my loan payments for the majority of the summer; Allowing me to spend less time waiting tables and more time in the studio. Of course, on top of these costs, there is the matter of actually getting from Boston to Nashville. Therefore, whatever remains after budgeting what I raise will go towards transportation.
I am constantly making an effort to let those who surround me with support know how much I appreciate them. Like I've said before, I would not be where I am if I did not have the constant encouragement from you that I have been blessed with throughout the years. Every day, I am on this incredible journey to attain my dream career as a songwriter. Please help me get a little bit closer!
Callie Marie Benjamin
P.S. If you would like to have a sense of what I'm doing with my music, please select the link below to listen to a few of my current pieces! https://soundcloud.com/callie-benjamin
"The true dream is being able to dream at all." http://billingsgazette.com/news/local/central-grad-helped-amid-chaos-of-nd-boston-marathon-explosion/article_1a084b8d-07b4-557e-b32a-b98575b3444d.html http://www.berklee.edu/news/berklee-student-helps-marathon-bombing-victims