Four formative years: Jasmine’s story

Senior Interdisciplinary Arts major Jasmine shares why she chose to enroll at Interlochen as a freshman—and what advice she would offer other first-time students.

Jasmine Salix

When Interdisciplinary Arts major Jasmine first arrived at Interlochen Arts Academy, her parents were justifiably nervous.

Jasmine, then just 14, would be spending the year more than 1,500 miles away from home at a school her parents had never seen in person—in the midst of a global pandemic.

“Because of COVID-19, my parents dropped me off in one of Interlochen’s many parking lots instead of helping me move into my room,” Jasmine recalls. “They had to watch me walk away into a campus they had no knowledge about, and that they had never visited.”

Despite the uncertainties, the Montana resident was determined to expand her personal and artistic horizons by attending the Academy.

“I decided to enroll at Interlochen as a freshman because I really felt the need to get out of my small town and experience something else,” Jasmine says.

Thanks to Interlochen’s robust resources for younger students and the support of her artistic and academic faculty, Jasmine found a place to belong in the Academy’s vibrant community.

“The biggest thing that helped me adjust to life on campus was having Clyde Sheets as my division director,” Jasmine says. “He is one of my favorite people on campus, and has truly helped me at every step of my time here.”

Jasmine also embraced reminders of home as a means for alleviating feelings of homesickness.

“Whenever I feel homesick, calling a friend or family member, listening to music that reminds me of home, or reading a familiar book usually helps,” she says.

Now a four-year senior, Jasmine has enjoyed rich opportunities to explore multiple artforms; participate in Interlochen’s acclaimed Chamber and Concert Choirs; perform in multidisciplinary showcases; and work with guest artists such as choreographer and interdisciplinary artist Michael Spencer Phillips (IAC 96). She has also had the opportunity to make friends with diverse young artists from around the world—which she cites as her favorite part of the Interlochen experience.

“I love the diversity of the community—not only in race and religion, but also in experiences and backgrounds,” she says.

As Jasmine enters her final year at the Academy, she offers advice for other rising freshmen and sophomores considering attending an arts boarding school.

“Remember that you don't need to figure everything out right away,” she says. “The people you're hanging out with right now might not be the people you’re hanging out with six months from now—and that’s okay. You might change majors three times, and that’s also okay. Just go with the flow.”

Want to begin your own Interlochen Arts Academy journey? Start your application today.