Berkshire Taconic Foundation announced this week that Dr. Tasia Cheng-Chia Wu has been awarded the 12th annual James C. Kapteyn Prize for her extraordinary work as a music teacher and advisor at Berkshire.
The prize, which comes with a $10,000 award, recognizes, “individuals of exemplary character, integrity, and honor who lead by example and impart to their students a lifelong love of learning and dedication to personal growth.”
Wu leads Berkshire’s Music Theory and Chamber Music classes and teaches Chorus with her husband, Dr. Clive Davis. She also serves as faculty advisor to Ursa Minor, the all-female a cappella group, and, along with Davis runs Berkshire’s Music Center and organizes the School’s visiting artist series.
“Dr. Wu’s greatest gift as a teacher is her passion for music, along with her unique ability to impart that love of music to her students,” said Arts Department Chair Paul Banevicius. “She puts in long hours rehearsing with her students. She takes the time to personally transcribe music to suit individual needs. She regularly advises students who seek to create independent study courses. And she works tirelessly with our seniors to prepare individual recordings and portfolios toward college applications,” Banevicius explained. “Tasia’s commitment to Berkshire’s musicians is truly inspiring.”
Wu’s work as an advisor is equally impactful. “One thing that I will always remember about Dr. Wu is her strength and how that inspired me as a student to use my voice,” said Wu’s advisee Hamda Hussein ‘21. “She encouraged me to speak up and share my story with the Berkshire community.”
The James C. Kapteyn Endowment Fund was established at Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation in 2009 to honor the memory of beloved teacher Jamie Kapteyn, who, for over two decades, taught English and coached soccer and lacrosse at Deerfield Academy, The Williston Northampton School and Cushing Academy. The primary mission of the fund is to honor its namesake’s memory by recognizing and rewarding extraordinary educators. To learn more about the Kapteyn Prize, click here.