New scholarships building new legacies

With a $300 scholarship and a baritone horn, 17-year-old Byron Hanson arrived at Interlochen in 1958.

The scholarship, covering half his tuition, enticed Byron away from his Edina, Minnesota home for the summer. Byron, who is turning 76, matter-of-factly recalled, “It was a work scholarship. I had to clean camp bathrooms. I had a brush, a bucket and ammonia. It wasn’t bad. I could finish in 20 minutes.”

Byron returned the following summer and again in 1960, beginning his 50-year legacy at Interlochen as a music educator, music director, conductor and archivist. He would also meet his wife, Ann Herkelmann, whose own legacy at Interlochen would span 42 years and include key roles in residence life, human resources and senior management.

Together, Byron and Ann would touch the lives of thousands of students.

Today, former students are coming together for the next chapter in the Hansons’ legacy by making gifts to start the Ann and Byron Hanson Endowed Camp Scholarship.

Percussionist Mike Udow is one:

Both on and off the podium, Byron’s quietly supportive way of being, was focused on helping campers and students hone their musical gifts. I imagine that all us who interacted with Byron feel an enormous debt of gratitude to him as we weaved our way through adolescence into adulthood. I, as one of literally thousands of Interlochen alumni, owe a deep and profound debt of gratitude to this extraordinary individual. —Mike Udow (IAC 63-66; IAA 65-67)

Touched by both Ann and Byron, former Interlochen Arts Academy violinist and summer staff counselor Susan Brown is also supporting this new scholarship:

Ann and Byron Hanson were both mentors to me during my time at Interlochen. This mentoring went far beyond the classroom and influenced many aspects of my young adult life. I believe this endowed scholarship will ensure that Interlochen continues to offer its unique gifts to aspiring young artists for many years to come. I am very excited to see this scholarship fund established. —Susan Brown (IAA 73-77; IAC St 76-78, 80)

Donors are also joining an effort to support a new scholarship in memory of former Interlochen Executive Assistant to the President, Barb Sandys.

Barb’s 21-year career at Interlochen ended tragically with her unexpected passing in 2016. She was admired for her energy, dedication to Interlochen and love of dance. She touched the lives of colleagues and students, including former Associate Vice President of Advancement and friend Beth Stoner Wiegand.

Beth remembers Barb’s authentic and ongoing compassion toward others. She remembers her inimitable warm smile, patience, flexibility and unflappable enthusiasm. Today Beth is leading efforts to endow the Barbara Taylor Sandys Dance Scholarship, so it can support dancers for years to come.

The first dancer helped by the Sandys Dance Scholarship was Jonatan Myhre JØrgensen (IAA 15-18).

In a letter thanking the Sandys family for their support, Jonatan first wrote about meeting Barb on the 2016 New York Philharmonic tour she helped coordinate. No one knew it would be her last tour.

I remember her bright smile and gentleness, which were extra impressive considering the fact that she was in charge of four buses’ worth of teenagers in New York City. She knew my name.

I got the news that she had passed away while sitting on a train in Denmark. ... I was alone on the train so I had a nice chance to just sit and remember her quietly. … I am so grateful for being able to spend three years here at Interlochen, and I can’t thank you enough for making that possible. —Jonatan Myhre Jørgensen

Barb’s life exemplified a spirit of creativity and vitality that came with her passion for the arts and compassion for people. With the support of those touched by Barb, her endowed memorial scholarship will help students like Jonatan in the spirit of the words Barb lived by:

Do all the good you can,
In all the ways you can,
To all the people you can,
In every place you can,
At all the times you can,
As long as ever you can.
—John Wesley

To make a gift online to either the Ann and Byron Hanson Endowed Camp Scholarship or the Barbara Taylor Sandys Dance Scholarship, please go to For additional information, please contact the Office of Advancement at 231.276.7623 or