The Mansfield University Music Department has a long, rich tradition of providing quality education in music. Founded in 1857, Mansfield University has provided instruction in music as a Classical Seminary (1857-1871), a State Normal Music Academy (1871-1914), and as a Music Department (1914-present).
During the 1920's, Mansfield University was one of three state owned schools selected to prepare music supervisors, and it was the first to offer a music supervisors certificate. Under the leadership of Grace Steadman from 1926-1939 the faculty and student body expanded and became well known for music performance and outstanding music education graduates. In 1929 the school became Mansfield State Teachers College.
During the '60s and '70s, when the name of the school was changed to Mansfield State College, the Music Department expanded its offerings to include not only music education but programs in performance, music therapy, and music merchandising. The rapid growth of the department during the sixties brought about the need for a larger and more up-to-date facility, and a new building was designed to meet the special needs of the music department. Named for the composer of Mansfield's Alma Mater, the Will George Butler Center opened in 1969.
The college became Mansfield University, part of the State System of Higher Education, in 1983.
The Mansfield University Music Department is an accredited member of the National Association of Schools of Music, the Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools and the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education. The department is also a member of and is accredited by the National Association for Music Therapy and the NAMM Affiliated Music Business Institutions. Students completing the music education degree are granted teacher certification in music K-12 by the Pennsylvania Department of Education.
The Mansfield University Department of Music provides an environment that promotes academic, musical and personal growth as well as intellectual, ethical and aesthetic values. The department serves the regional, national and international communities by developing human and material resources. The department of music is committed to stimulating a continuous pursuit of knowledge, understanding and skills by students and faculty. To accomplish this mission the department pledges:
Will George Butler Music Center (usually just called "Butler Center") has 55 practice rooms, a large choral rehearsal hall, a large band rehearsal room, 3 classrooms, and an excellent recital hall.
The recital hall, Steadman Theater, seats 550 people, has excellent acoustics, and offers a variety of staging and lighting opportunities.
Butler Center also houses computer labs for music theory and composition to complement course offerings in these areas. Electronic piano classrooms are available for class instruction in piano and keyboard skills.
The music library occupies the first floor of newly-renovated, technologically-advanced North Hall. The collection includes more than 10,000 books, 13,000 scores, 13,000 recordings, and 500 videotapes.