Martha Hilley

Martha Hilley

School of Music
Senior Fellow

What is an influential learning experience you had as a student?

What inspired your passion for teaching?

I have always wanted to teach. My mom was a teacher for 35 years and I watched her bring magic to her students through music. I suppose my first "ah ha" moment was when I heard from a former undergraduate in the form of a thank you note for never giving up on her. She also wanted me to know how much what she had learned in her piano classes was helping her with her teaching. It only takes one of those to make everything worthwhile.

What advice do you have for other teachers?

Before your students can be both curious and enthusiastic about learning, these qualities must come through in your teaching, facilitating and guidance. Following so very closely will be your sincerity. Remember, if you can't be 100% sure that your life would be incomplete without teaching, do something else!


For more on Martha Hilley's work, please visit her homepage or email her at

Martha Hilley is a Senior Fellow and serves as mentor for incoming Fellows in the Provost Teaching Fellows program. Find out more about this Faculty Initiative here.