Juried Scholarship Competition 2023


There will be two $1000 and two $500 scholarships awarded. Instrumentalists and vocalists are welcome to apply.

The Categories of Competition are: Jazz Performance & Jazz Composition


  1. Carefully read the Official Rules of the New Jersey Jazz Society 2022 Scholarship Competition 
  2. DO NOT INCLUDE your name or college name on your submitted audio ONLY files. DO NOT embed any identifying information within the file.  Audio files containing names identifying the student or college will be disqualified.
    Friday, April 14, 11:59PM Eastern Time.

Complete Entries Must Include:

  • Cover Letter with Name, College, Email Address, and Instrument.  Vocalist applicants should indicate Vocalist.
  • Two Three Minute MP3 Audio ONLY Recordings 
  • Letter of Recommendation from College Music Teacher
  • Personal Statement  (300 – 500 word essay)


  1. Applicants must be currently enrolled in a New Jersey college undergraduate music program, and must show proof of enrollment, or be a New Jersey resident currently enrolled in an out of state college music program, and be able to show proof of residency.
  2. Applicants may apply for ONE CATEGORY ONLY.
  3. Pitch Correction is NOT permitted. Entries found to be using pitch correction (or similar techniques) will be disqualified.
  4. The scholarships are not open to student musicians engaged in full-time professional work.                                                                            


  1. All entries must be submitted online no later than Friday, April 14, 11:59PM Eastern Time.
  2. Jazz Performance applicants must submit TWO three minute MP3 Recordings (audio ONLY) 
  3. Jazz Composition applicants must submit ONE MP3 recording (audio only) and a copy of the score.
  4. Applicants need to write a 300-500 word essay to accompany their submission addressing the question:
    “How do you plan to use your jazz education and how will this prize money help you achieve that?”
  5. Complete entries should be sent to:
    Cydney Halpin
  6. Incomplete entries will NOT be considered.


  1.  Judgments are made on the totality of the submission, the ability demonstrated on the candidate recordings, the accompanying personal letter and reference.  Recordings are judged “blind.”  The only identification on recordings sent to the judges is a code number.  No student or school names will be submitted to the judges.
  2. The judges are professional musicians, educators and industry leaders.  The2023 judges are: Don Braden, Ted Chubb, Jason Olaine, Mariel Bildsten, and select NJJS board members.        


  1. Applicants will be notified via email when complete entry is received.
  2. Scholarship winners will be notified via email by May 1st.  The results of the competition, along with winner profiles, will be published in the June issue of Jersey Jazz, as well as on the NJJS website homepage and Facebook page.

Two winners per category will receive:

  • $1,000 in prize money
  • $500 in prize money
  • Professional mentorship and guidance from an industry professional
  • Coverage in the award winning magazine Jersey Jazz
  • The opportunity to perform with an industry professional
  • Winner will be partnered with a younger musician to mentor


Please contact:
Cydney Halpin, President, New Jersey Jazz Society


 The funding of Jazz Studies scholarships is an important priority of the NJJS, with the goal of providing grants that cover a significant portion of educational costs. However, without generous financial contributions from people like you, we cannot increase our scholarship awards to keep pace with rising education costs. What better way to express your support of jazz than to help provide for the education of the next generation of musicians?

A contribution to the New Jersey Jazz Society can be earmarked for its scholarship fund. The NJJS is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and all contributions are tax deductible to the extent allowable by law. Scholarship donations are restricted to the use of funding Jazz Studies scholarships. A contribution of $1,000 or more marks the donor as a Lifetime Member of the New Jersey Jazz Society with all the rights, privileges and services provided to annually-renewed members. For more information contact Education Director James Pansulla at JazzEducation@NJJS.org.

Would you like to contribute to the NJJS Scholarship Fund?

We accept credit card payments through Paypal – simply click on the icon below – or you can mail a check to:

New Jersey Jazz Society
Mike Katz, Treasurer
382 Springfield Avenue Suite 217
Summit, NJ 07901

Please make check payable to: NJJS Scholarship

Would you like to maximize the impact of your donation? Many employers match employee contributions, sometimes doubling or tripling your gift! Contact your Human Resources Department to see if they participate in a matching program.

Subscribe to eNews

Simply Timeless

The New Jersey Jazz Society (NJJS) is a non-profit organization of business and professional people, musicians, teachers, students and listeners working together for the purpose of advancing jazz music.