Worthington Independent School District 518 Orchestra Teacher Melanie Loy has been awarded the Southwest Minnesota Arts Council (SMAC) “Prairie Disciple” for 2022.
SMAC’s Prairie Disciple Award provides awareness and recognition of one individual per year from southwest Minnesota (SMAC’s region is 18 counties), whose activities and involvement have substantially contributed to the arts over an extended period of time. In 2022, SMAC’s Prairie Disciple nomination process was for teachers/educators only. Loy is District 518’s orchestra teacher for Prairie Elementary’s fourth-graders, along with Worthington High Schools’ Varsity Strings and WHS Orchestra.
When Loy arrived at Worthington District 518 Schools in 2006, there were 94 students throughout the district playing in the orchestra. The program now has more than 350 orchestra students, and two additional full-time instructors at the middle school level have been added to maintain the growth.