Lauren Crumble is a senior music therapy major and recipient of the Mary Jo Brown Scholarship. She is in her fifth semester of practicum and hopes to work in palliative care when she graduates. Crumble has a soft spot for helping people of all ages in their time of need and strives to bring a little bit of joy into their daily lives through her musical abilities. During her time at Illinois State, Crumble has found her calling and gives credit to the School of Music for pushing her to try new things and think bigger. Crumble knew ISU was the obvious choice because of its excellent School of Music and the high student passing rate for the board certification exam for music therapy. Crumble came to ISU after taking a two-and-a-half-year break after high school to work. She then decided that this was the right time for her to go to college and ISU was happy to welcome her.

Crumble is a member of multiple student organizations on campus and has a part-time job at the ISU Recreation Center. At the “Rec” she has held six different positions and earned the award for outstanding guest services. Her involvement in the ISU student chapter of the American Music Therapy Association and Tau Beta Sigma Sorority has given her leadership opportunities and a well-rounded college experience. Crumble has also been in almost every performing ensemble and said that Illinois State has expanded her music abilities to another level. Since beginning her time in college, Crumble has learned five new instruments in addition to her main instrument, the clarinet.

As the oldest sibling of five, college was something she knew she wanted to do but affordability was a challenge. Through the Mary Jo Brown Scholarship, Crumble was able to ease the financial tension and focus on her studies. Crumble’s scholarship has given her the chance to get involved on campus and enjoy her experience in a way she wouldn’t have been able to without it.

“Thank you for the support and for giving to a cause that recognizes students for their efforts inside the ensemble. It makes a big difference and is much appreciated,” Crumble said.

Redbirds Rising: The Campaign for Illinois State supports students like Crumble in their academic journey to find their passion. The $150 million comprehensive campaign aims to enhance and expand opportunities for Illinois State students. Through the support of scholarship, leadership, and innovation, students will have a next-level education and gain real-world experience while still in college. To encourage students like Lauren Crumble to do bigger and better things at Illinois State, please consider joining thousands of other donors by visiting