Osvaldo Vargas, a music student and recipient of the School of Music scholarship


Osvaldo Vargas is a graduate student of Jazz Performance and a recipient of the School of Music scholarship. The passionate drummer is looking to pursue a career as a jazz performer and professor. Thanks to the scholarship, he’s been able to continue his studies and take full advantage of FIU’s music program. “Without the scholarship, I don’t know if I would’ve been able to stay in school, because I’m here by myself.”

The native from Costa Rica says that, in general, scholarships from the university are difficult to get as an international student. After receiving the scholarship for the first time in the beginning of his college education, he continued to apply every semester and received a larger amount each time. The scholarship has covered his Master’s program almost entirely.

When he was an undergraduate student, he had the experience of a lifetime. Osvaldo was selected to play with the FIU Jazz Big Band at the Adrienne Arsht Center for Performing Arts alongside some of the best jazz musicians in the world, including Paquito D’Rivera, Giovanni Hidalgo, Dave Samuels, and the trumpet player Jon Faddis. He’s also had famous musicians as guest speakers in some of his graduate courses. He recalls meeting Ignacio Berroa and Adam Nussbaum, two well-known drummers of our time, as some of the best experiences of his college years. “This scholarship gave me the opportunity to meet and in my case to also play with some of the best musicians in the world.”

“First of all, thank you for donating the money for this scholarship for me and for other people that I know also have it. I hope that whoever made this donation and other people keep donating money to the school because it’s a really good opportunity for a lot of people who maybe wouldn’t be able to have experiences like those that I’ve had, without the scholarship.”


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