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United Sound is an organization whose mission is to provide musical performance experiences for students with special needs through peer mentorship.

Teacher of the Year

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Chris Coughlin

Mission Hills High School, San Marcos, California

Both inside and outside the classroom, Mr. Coughlin is devoted to music and music education. I, as well as many of his other students, appreciate the fact that he takes the time to learn and understand every instrument to better educate us, and especially takes the time to learn and understand each and every one of his students to better connect to us. The United Sound program is no exception. As President of the Mission Hills High School chapter, I often work with Mr. Coughlin, who always has fresh ideas about new things to try at our rehearsals to make them more exciting and inclusive. At every meeting, he is very involved; greeting the New Musicians with extreme enthusiasm and friendliness, and setting an example for their Mentors by doing so. Mr. Coughlin has greatly fostered the growth and unity of our program. He is not only an inspiration and muse to the New Musicians, but also an amazing teaching model for the Peer Mentors. I definitely know my own leadership and teaching skills have been greatly honed by his lessons. One of his best traits is his patience; whenever a mentor and their musician become frustrated or need assistance with the instrument or the curriculum, Mr. Coughlin is always more than happy to help, and more often than not his words of encouragement and persistence result in success. I highly recommend Christopher Coughlin to be recognized for the United Sound Teacher of the Year for all of his relentlessly hard work. I know he is extremely devoted to the program and has promising plans to expand and improve the program in years to come.

Submitted by Kylie Williams