Educating Young Artists


MJW Educational Scholarships

The  Memphis Jazz Workshop has several different types of  scholarships available.  All scholarships will be awarded based on availability, talent, and the needs of the Memphis Jazz Workshop.

Performance based scholarships are for filling the needs of the workshop. 

The Harold E. McRae Scholarship is for  high school students and is based on financial need and student excellence. 

The Charles “GT” Taylor Scholarship is for College Students.

Harold E. McRae Memorial Scholarship

The Harold E. McRae Scholarship is named after a life-long jazz enthusiast who also spent more than 60 years as a teacher, coach, assistant principal and principal in the legacy Memphis City Schools and Shelby County School system. He is most remembered for his nearly 20-year tenure as principal of Westwood High School in Southwest Memphis.  He spent his entire career teaching, mentoring and nurturing thousands of young people in order to help them grow into productive and successful adults.”

The Harold McRae Memorial Scholarship is available to worthy MJW students who need assistance with tuition costs associated with workshop participation during a given semester.

Harold McRae Scholarship

Charles “GT” Taylor Memorial Scholarship

Charles "GT" Taylor Scholarship

The Charles “GT” Taylor Memorial Scholarship is named after one of the premiere Jazz musicians in Memphis during the 1960s and the first African American leader of the Jazz Statesmen at Memphis State University (now University of Memphis). After graduating in 1967 from Lester High School, he entered Memphis State on a music scholarship and began to showcase his talent around the city. He led bands at many places where blacks were not allowed but his talent made a way for him. Sadly, he was killed in a car accident coming from a “gig” in 1969 and the world never got to see how far his talent would take him.

However, those who remember him quickly remind you of how he was always the most talented in the room, but his humility made everyone feel like they were even better.

Scholarship Requirements:

  • Students/parents will be expected to contribute a total of 10 hours of volunteer service to the organization PER SEMESTER in order to maintain their scholarship.
  • Student must agree to practice every day and turn in a practice record.
  • Students must agree to no more than two UNEXCUSED absences.
  • Students must be on time for all theory classes, master-classes, rehearsals and performances.
  • Students should have theory assignments and performance music prepared for each rehearsal and performance.

The student and the parent will be asked to sign a contract upon acceptance of the scholarship.

Scholarship application checklist:

  1. Have you registered for class with your online application?
  2. You must submit a recommendation letter email to .
  3. You must accept responsibilities that scholarship awards require. There will be an electronic signature in the application.
  4. Fill out the Scholarship Application by clicking on the words “Scholarship Application” found below.

Because finances should not prevent a motivated and talented student from participating in our program, LeeJazzOmega, Inc. provides financial aid and scholarships through the Memphis Jazz Workshop Education Fund and the Harold McRae Memorial Scholarship Fund.


Lea VanMerkestyn,
Operations Manager

Stephen Lee,
Executive Director
Call or text (901) 860-5015

Support Our Mission

Memphis Jazz Workshop is a non-profit organization committed to cultivating young musicians by providing learning and performance opportunities with professional artists while embracing jazz as our regional art form. Your gift of any size helps cultivate the future of jazz.