Ron Waters Scholarship

Jazz trumpeter, composer, and arranger Ron Waters was in the forefront of the Central Pennsylvania jazz scene since the 1950’s.  After graduating from the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music, Waters joined the Army and served as dance band director of the 427th Army Band in Europe. After returning from Europe, he led his own quintet and worked with a popular East Coast jazz ensemble, Marge and the Majors.  Mr. Waters organized and conducted the Central Pennsylvania Friends of Jazz Youth Band in 1983. He is a member of the Friends of Jazz Hall of Fame and was a wonderful mentor to hundreds of aspiring jazz musicians.  He passed away in 2022 at the age of 87

We award a scholarship to one graduating member of our Youth Band each year. The scholarship fund also supports less privileged young musicians' attendance to the Central Pennsylvania Jazz Camp, held every June at Messiah College.

Each year, we host the Ron Waters Scholarship Party to raise money for the scholarship. The Party features performances by the Friends of Jazz Youth Band, Youth Band Alumni, and many area musicians.

Donate to the Scholarship Fund

Hear from scholarship recipients...

"I clearly remember my first rehearsal with the youth band: students of extreme variation in age, three bassists, a violinist, a sea of saxophones, a few trumpets, and an almost rhythm section. No matter the collection of instruments, Ron always makes sure to have a part specifically tailored to the needs of each player. 

Ronnie has been a guide for generations of this city’s young musicians."

-Jonathan Ragonese '07
Composer/saxophonist, faculty at West Chester University