Meet Monica Flores
My name is Monica Flores, Class of 2012 from the DMI. The DMI has helped me in ways no one can understand. While at the institute, you learn to be dedicated to your craft. You are pushed and molded to be the best at what you do. Although I did not pursue music in my higher education, these traits that I learned at the DMI helped me tremendously. Even at times when I felt like I wasn’t cut out for my major, I had a drive and determination that was instilled in me by the institute to be the best at what I could do. Now, as a graduate from Texas A&M University with a Bachelors of Science in Electrical Engineering, I can say that the institute is a unique program where kids find motivation and passion like no other program can offer. They create passionate individuals, and nothing can stop a young adult with a passion and a will.
Meet Johnathan Hulett
I’ve been a member of the Diaz Music Institute since I was in the seventh grade. The pitch that caught my attention was that through the Summer Jazz Workshops I would have the opportunity to double my musical abilities by the end of a three-week camp. I decided to give it a shot, and the results far surpassed all expectations. Through the institute I was exposed to a healthy, diverse, structured, artistic outlet that set high expectations, promoted self discipline, and provided a unique community of talented music lovers and aspiring professionals as peers; peers that would undoubtedly become lifelong friends.
Aside from providing the opportunity to receive intense instruction and play along professionals such as Johnny Pacheco, Osvaldo Roman, Jimmy Bosh, Rebecca Mauleon, and Tia Fuller, the Diaz Music Institute is a conduit for one of the greatest resources that our youth need; mentorship. Many Alumnae of the DMI are still active role models in the lives of the younger players that are finding their footing along their musical journeys. During my later years in the program I had the opportunity to be a section leader and mentor; an opportunity that sparked a passion for teaching and seeing other creative artists pursue their craft with passion and tact.
While I’m completing my Master’s Degree in Jazz Performance at The University of Miami’s Frost School of Music I am also a Teaching Assistant in the university’s Shalala Music Reach Program that focuses on student mentoring in inner-city public schools and art programs. I’m the only performance major in my class to pursue this endeavor, but my time at the Diaz Music Institute has prepared me on so many levels to be effective and make an impact in the lives of young people.