Santa Monica College’s Emeritus College for older adults is reaching out to young people — with money.

Emeritus has awarded a $500 scholarship, from an anonymous donor, to Santa Monica High School senior Haley Hill for her contributions to Emeritus. The Bridges to the Future Scholarship Award will be given every year to a high school student, Emeritus College officials said.

Haley was cited for playing saxophone in the Emeritus Concert Band, which holds several concerts a year at SMC’s Broad Stage and other venues. Although most of the band members are older adults (55 and above), the band does have younger members.

“We’re really excited about this new scholarship because it’s a really good way to build a bridge to the high schools,” said Ron Furuyama, associate dean of Emeritus College. “Many of our Emeritus students are grandparents and they want to make sure their grandchildren have a bright future.”

Established in 1975, Emeritus College offers classes and special programs to older adults, serving more than 3,400 students per semester.

Haley, who plays with the Samohi wind ensemble, marching band and jazz band — plans to attend Washington University in St. Louis this fall as a humanities major and religion minor. She says playing with the Emeritus Band has been “a great experience and privilege.”

“We play a lot of challenging music,” she said. “Candide and Miller Mood have, by far, been the most difficult. The exposure to this music has really forced me to become a better musician. I also love playing with people who have more experience than me. Everyone in the Emeritus Band has been really kind and supportive. They’ve encouraged me to become a better player and to keep up my music.”


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