New Horizons

The School

Established in 1988, the Community Music Division (CMD) is a part of the DePaul University’s School of Music. The Division serves more than 700 students in the Chicago area with an outstanding professional faculty of over 70 artist-educators. The school’s comprehensive offerings include individual lessons, musicianship and instrumental classes, performance ensembles, workshops, student recitals, and DePaul Music Pathways, a special program for children in foster care. Several collaborative programs are also offered in partnership with Chicago area schools and The Chicago Children’s Choir.

Our Mission

The mission of the Community Music Division is to provide the highest quality music instruction to students of all ages and abilities, diverse backgrounds and differing educational goals. We offer the opportunity for serious musical study and growth in a nurturing environment and aim to foster an atmosphere that encourages a lifelong enjoyment of music.


The Community Music Division is a member of the National Guild of Community schools of the Arts (the pre-eminent organization in the United States that has fostered the growth of community music and arts schools since 1937), the Chicago Consortium of Community Music Schools, the Suzuki Association of the Americas, and the New Horizons International Music Association.

Academic Calendar

The academic year is divided into three quarters: Fall (12 weeks), Winter (11 weeks), and Spring (10 weeks). For pre-college students, private lessons extend for the entire length of the quarter; adult students register for 10 weeks of lessons per quarter. Classes are held for 10 weeks and ensembles for 8 weeks unless otherwise noted.

DePaul School of Music

For nearly a century, DePaul School of Music has played an important and vital role in the education of musicians and teachers. It enjoys an established reputation for excellence and boasts a distinguished faculty of performing artists, conductors, composers and educators. DePaul’s Lincoln Park campus, home of the School of Music, is located in one of Chicago’s most attractive residential neighborhoods. Community Music students take advantage of the school’s modern facilities, which include well-equipped classrooms, studios and performance halls.