What is the Student Instrument Sales Policy?
All instruments made by a student maker are the sole property of the Chicago School of Violin Making, Inc. Any instrument may be offered for sale to the public by the school.
Upon successful graduation, the student will be given his/her first and last instruments to keep at no cost. If the student does not complete the program, all instruments will remain the property of the school.
At any point during the course, a student may request to purchase his/her instrument if it is still available. If so, the instrument must be paid for before it is removed from the school property. Instrument prices will be determined by the school.
Do I need to know how to play an instrument?
No. While previous playing experience is helpful, it is not required. All students, beginners and advanced alike, take a bi-weekly violin lesson as part of the curriculum, included in tuition.
Are financial aid options available to students through the school?
We currently have limited financial aid options. The Chicago School of Violin Making has a small fund for scholarships reserved for current students who are in acute financial need.
When is the best time to apply?
Application submissions fill up quickly. It is better if you apply as soon as possible. In the event that the upcoming January, May, and September classes are full, you will be put on a waiting list.
What type of visa will I need as a foreign student?
Our school is considered a vocational school, and students here are required by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to obtain an M-1 student visa. The M-visa is more restrictive than an F-visa issued to students studying at 4-year colleges & universities.
An applicant for an M-visa is required to submit USCIS form I-134 (Affidavit of Support). On this form, the student's financial sponsor (or the student, if self-supporting) must prove financial resources sufficient for support for the full 3-year program. (Including tuition and living expenses). The U.S. government does not allow M-visa students to hold jobs while studying in the U.S.
The Form I-134 and supporting financial documentation are required when making an appointment at the U.S Embassy or Consulate to apply for the M-visa.
Will I receive a certificate upon completion?
The student will receive certification upon completing the program.
Do I need to know English?
An English test is not required. If the instructor feels that a student's understanding of the language is not sufficient, he/she may be required to take evening English classes in the community.
Can I visit the school?
Yes, we would love to have you. Please contact us directly to schedule your visit.
Are there any accommodations made for religious holidays (e.g. Rosh Hashanah, Sukkot, Passover)?
Yes. As long as arrangements are made in advance, a student will not be counted absent on those days.
What are the job prospects for graduates?
It varies from making instruments to repairing them. The job market is good if you are flexible about relocating.
What recognitions have graduates received from organized bodies such as The Violin Society of America?
Many of our graduates are members of the American Federation of Violin and Bow Makers. We also have a number of graduates that have been awarded prizes in the Violin Society of America's bi-annual violin-making competitions.
How much homework is expected on a regular basis?
There is some reading on the history of the violin and each student is expected to keep a notebook.
Does the curriculum include the making of instruments other than the violin?
Yes. Students may make violas, cellos, and double basses. The tools and skills learned at the Chicago School of Violin Making can be applied to the construction of other instruments as well.
What is the average age of the typical student?
We have a variety of students from diverse backgrounds ranging in age from 18 to 60.
Is there a lunch break during the school day?
Students have one lunch break during the school day at noon. The school has both a microwave and refrigerator for student use.