PORTALES, NM (03/08/2018) Tymia Peterson has known she wanted to be a performer since age five. She is living out that dream as a vocal performance major at Eastern New Mexico University. "Singing is an expressive art, and I have the privilege to be an artist every day," explained the senior, who hopes to pursue a career in both musical theatre and opera after she graduates this spring.
She is interested in giving back to future performers, as well. "I want to become a voice teacher so that I can help other singers achieve their dreams and become the best performers they can be," she said.
Her ultimate dream is to become a professional opera singer and travel the world. She strives to someday perform at the Royal Opera House in London or the Metropolitan Opera in New York City.
She recently prepared music for the ENMU Opera Scene program, which presented selected scenes from operas and musicals on March 2 and 3. She is also a work study for the Department of Music for Dr. Jason Paulk, professor of music, and Ken Miller in the choral department.
She spends most of her time in her favorite building on campus: the Music Building. "I practically live there between having classes and working there almost every day of the week," she explained. "I love being able to see my professors, friends and people I love all in one building."
Tymia, who was born in Birmingham, Alabama, and raised in Rio Rancho, New Mexico, chose to attend ENMU after her campus tour. "I knew on my first visit on campus, that Eastern was the right school for me," she said. "What had drawn me into going to Eastern was the faulty-to-student ratio. Also, the wonderful professors that I met and am now working within the Music Building."
The music student has had several mentors during her time at Eastern. Dr. Travis Sherwood, assistant professor of music, Dr. Paulk and Mrs. Kayla Paulk, instructor of music, have been her "biggest supporters since my freshman year and shaped me into the musician I am today."
Her favorite class is "Vocal Literature," because "we get to explore different eras and languages of music. The class also gives in-depth information about past and current composers' life backgrounds and musical styles. Dr. Sherwood teaches this class, and he's always fun to listen to."
During Tymia's time on campus, she has made the Dean's List for several semesters and received academic and music scholarships. Her favorite part about being a Greyhound is being a part of a supportive community that cares about student success.
Her advice to other music majors is to take the time to study, do the homework and practice. "If you love music and see yourself having a career as a performer, the hard work is rewarding."