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Morgan Cope Scholarship Recipients

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Corey Gardner

2022 Morgan Cope "For the Love of Music" Scholarship recipient

Congratulations to this year’s recipient of the Morgan Cope “For the Love of Music” scholarship Corey Gardner. Corey was the first name that each of the faculty thought of as he brings a love of music and joy to everything he does.  Corey is an Army veteran, having served in Afghanistan.  He is a wonderful composer but also studies voice, participating in Concert Choir and Opera Workshop.  Corey is a leader in the School of Music, but also serves the vets on campus in a leadership position.

I want to thank Dr. Julie Wieck and the rest of the faculty that arranged for this year’s presentation at Vocal Extravaganza. Dr. Wieck told me that Morgan holds a special place in their hearts and she remembers Morgan loving Halloween and helping with makeup on the Addams Family production.

I also want to thank Steve Koleszar and Raise for Rowyn for their ongoing support of Morgan’s endowment that makes this all possible.

Previous Years

Kayla Mommsen

2023 Morgan Cope "For the Love of Music" Scholarship recipient

I would like to congratulate this year’s recipient of the Morgan Cope “For the Love of Music” scholarship Kayla Mommsen. Kayla is a junior choral music education major and has participated in Treble Choir, Concert Choir, Opera Workshop and Chamber Singers, as well as the Palouse Choral Society. She serves as the President of the Student National Association for Teachers of Singing and is the choral representative to the Collegiate National Association for Music Educators, as well as an officer in the WSU Choir RSO. Kayla regularly volunteers to assist the program with recruiting events, choral festivals and summer camp. This year she was hired to work at Trinity Lutheran Church as the children’s music director for an aptly named program, Joyful Noise! That name epitomizes Kayla’s singing, laughter and contributions to the WSU School of Music.

I would like to thank Dr. Wieck and Dr. McCarthy for all their help for this year’s presentation. I also would like to thank Steve Koleszar and Raise for Rowyn for their ongoing support of Morgan’s scholarship

Sarah Smith

2021 Morgan Cope "For the Love of Music" Scholarship recipient

Sarah Smith is an honors music and psychology student at WSU, currently studying in her senior year. Sarah is originally from Denver, Colorado. Her mother and grandmother are also singers, and for her recital, Sarah plans to sing a piece her grandmother also performed for her senior vocal recital in 1968. Sarah has been involved in music since she was ten years old, taking voice lessons and participating in choir and theater.


Sarah chose WSU for its strong sense of community and the supportive faculty, originally intending to major in psychology. Her freshman year, Sarah joined the WSU Treble Choir and Dr. Agulay’s voice studio, and she was soon inspired to pursue a second degree in music. Since then, Sarah has also participated in WSU’s Concert Choir and Opera Workshop and has enjoyed her diverse course load between music and psychology.

Studying music has been the utmost privilege and value to Sarah, and she can’t imagine her WSU experience without the School of Music. After WSU, Sarah plans to attend graduate school and enter the field of social work or mental health counseling, yet she plans for music to play an additional centerpiece in her life. Receiving the Morgan Cope “For the Love of Music” Scholarship has been an honor for Sarah, and she is so grateful to the Cope family and their supporters! 

Kiana Burt
Kiana Burt

2020 Morgan Cope "For the Love of Music" Scholarship recipient

My name is Kiana Burt and as the recipient of the Visual and Performing Arts Scholarship, I would like to personally thank you for your generous donation. I am 22 years old and a native to Shoreline, Washington. I am the youngest of seven children in a most loving but functionally dysfunctional family. This is my second year at Washington State University after three years at Shoreline Community College. I chose to attend WSU because I have countless different career interests, all of which WSU accommodates. I was also very impressed with the staff at the WSU School of Music for their kindness and knowledge. I will be focusing on finishing my BM in Vocal Performance. I am honored to take this scholarship, and use it towards my Bachelor’s in Music in Voice. I do believe that granting half of the scholarship each semester is a great way to go. As an aspiring musician and teacher, I am always in favor of a scholarship to help a musician realize their dream. Other music scholarships I have received is the Peggy O’Coyne Memorial Scholarship at Shoreline Community College, the SCC Memorial Scholarship with the Seattle Children’s Chorus. I have also received the Honorable Mention Award and Second Place Award at the Puget Sound Division National Association for Teachers of Singing competition in 2017 and 2018. At WSU, I am looking forward to starting Concert Choir. I have been singing my whole life and choir has been a part of my life since I was six years old. I am currently writing an SATB choral arrangement to “Someday” from The Hunchback of Notre Dame, that hope will premiere at one of the choir concerts. In addition to obtaining my BM in Vocal Performance here at WSU, I hope to either take some prerequisites for Nursing School, or go through the 3-2 program with my Vocal Performance and obtain my Master’s Degree in Voice. After WSU, I plan to put my music pursuits on hold and pursue a career in Midwifery either through Seattle University or Bastyr University.

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Anya Guadamuz

2019 Morgan Cope "For the Love of Music" Scholarship recipient

Shawn and I made the presentation to Anya Guadamuz, this year's recipient of the Raise for Rowyn Morgan Cope "For the Love of Music" Scholarship. We presented the scholarship on Halloween at the final recital for last year's recipient Katie Berndt. Anya is a junior studying vocal performance as Katie has and is completing her degree. I did not get to hear Katie sing last year but it was very special to hear her beautiful voice on the night we honored Morgan's memory and love of singing. We would like to thank all the Washington State University Staff and Faculty that arranged for the presentation (Dean Luethi, Don Shearer, Lori Wiest, Julie Wieck and Sandra Albers). We would like to wish Anya and Katie all the success in their music careers. We would also like to thank Steve and Michelle from Edward Jones and all those that sold raffle tickets during this year's fund raiser which raised over $1,500 for Morgan's scholarship. And finally, we would like to thank Raise for Rowyn for partnering with us and making this all possible.

Katie Bendt
Katie Bendt

2018 Morgan Cope "For the Love of Music" Scholarship recipient

Congratulations to Katherine “Katie” Berndt, the first recipient of the Morgan Cope “For the Love of Music Scholarship” at WSU. Katie is a Vocal Major and an inspiring young lady. Thank you to Dr. Luethi and Tom Fitzgerald at WSU for all your help in arranging for the presentation

Morgan's Story

Morgan Karlee Cope arrived in this world unexpectedly. She was small, frail, and weighed only two pounds nine ounces arriving ten weeks before she was expected. Morgan was small but powerful and she brightened our world for a brief 20 years, leaving us as unexpectedly as she arrived.


From the time Morgan was a little girl she had a deep love of music and began to sing at an early age. She had confidence and enjoyed making people smile through music. Morgan began singing with the Tacoma Youth Chorus, acting and singing Missoula Children's Theater and being a part of “The Adams Family” musical at WSU. Morgan shared her gift of music and her passion for life with all of those around her.

The presentation of the Morgan Cope "For the Love of Music" scholarship to Kiana Burt by Morgan's father Chuck Cope

Morgan had a Servant's Heart and a strong faith in God. She found the good in everyone and made it a point to reach out to those overlooked or mistreated. She lived her life as He commanded "Love Him with all your heart, mind and soul and to love others as yourself". She was involved in church youth ministries, plays & programs, missions to Mexico, volunteering for Fright Factory in Buckley, and volunteering in the nursery at the church she attended. Morgan knew what it meant to love Jesus and to love others as Jesus commanded us to do.

Thoroughly enjoying her school years, Morgan played volleyball, softball, ran track/cross-country, and was very active in choir, drama, FFA and AVID. She graduated in June of 2014 from White River High School and continued on to attend Washington State University, following in her family’s footsteps, where she took music classes and her general university requirements. She was a member of the Pi Beta Phi Sorority, the WSU Choir and was loved by her teachers and classmates alike.

The Morgan Cope "For the Love of Music" scholarship fund also supports the Tacoma Youth Choir

Morgan was called to heaven on November 22nd, 2015 in a head-on car collision while on her way home from college for Thanksgiving. Far too soon for all of us who loved her! We grieve because we miss her dearly. We miss our little star that brightened our night sky through her voice, laughter, smile and beautiful spirit. We know she is home with Jesus, her grandfathers and all those that loved her and have left this world.


Morgan’s life may have been short, but she lived it well and left such a beautiful legacy. Until we see you again Morgan, we love and miss you!

Geoff Soderquist, the winner of the Callaway driver raffle, with his new prize at the 2020 RFR Golf Tournament
Raise for Rowyn was proud to partner with Chuck Cope and the Morgan Cope Scholarship Fund at the 2020 RFR Endowment Golf Tournament
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