Merit School of Music

Sarah Vander-Ploeg

CMPI Project Manager


Princeton University, BA, Public Policy & Certificate in Music Performance
Royal Academy of Music, MMus, Vocal Faculty & Concert Planning
Northwestern University, MM, Voice & Opera


Sarah Vander Ploeg is an administrator, educator, and performer who is passionate about increasing equity in the arts. Originally from New Jersey, Sarah holds degrees in Public Policy and Vocal Performance from Princeton, the Royal Academy of Music (London), and Northwestern University. She is grateful that music has brought her around the world, from studying post-apartheid arts reform in South Africa, to singing at the Austrian Foreign Ministry in Vienna, to participating in choral workshops in Guatemala. Most recently, Sarah has been the Coordinator of School and Community Partnerships for the Negaunee Music Institute at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, where amongst many duties she developed the Civic Orchestra Mentors program, training and coordinating sustained mentorship of instrumental music students throughout Chicago Public Schools. She is also the soprano member and Deputy Executive Director of Fourth Coast Ensemble, Chicago’s classical vocal quartet. Sarah lives in Rogers Park with her husband, Kevin Harrison, their son Willem, and their stubborn corgi, Brisket.

Favorite Song:

It’s impossible to choose just one! But I’ve listening to a lot of Sara Bareilles and Lake Street Dive lately, and I really admire Julia Bullock’s work.

My Links: