Sandra Hood Camp


Sandra Camp, a pianist and music teacher during her career, retired and was living in Berrien Springs, Michigan, at the time of her death. Although her first two teaching positions after graduating from Emmanuel Missionary College, now Andrews University, with a B.Mus.Ed. in 1957 were in an elementary school in Michigan and at a private school for gifted preschoolers in Alaska, Camp spent most of her career teaching music at the secondary and college/university level.

Her first music teaching position was at Sheyenne River Academy, now Dakota Adventist Academy, where she taught from 1961 to 1963. Following two more years of teaching in the public school system, she returned to AU where she earned an M.A. cum laude in music with an emphasis on piano. She also taught piano during her graduate study at AU in 1966.

From 1968 to 1971, Camp pursued and completed course work for a D.Mus.Ed, at Indiana University, where she had a teaching assistantship. After a year as assistant professor of piano and music history and literature at the University of Arkansas in Monticello, she accepted a position at Walla Walla College, now University, as associate professor of piano and piano pedagogy. During the next six years while serving as the primary piano teacher and establishing a piano preparatory program at WWC, she completed all requirements for her degree from IU, graduating with distinction in 1975.

During the 1977-78 school year at WWC, Camp was voted music department chair-elect for the coming year. Her teaching contribution in piano and in the classroom, as well as her interaction with the faculty had made her an esteemed colleague. Several of her students had won awards in area competitions.

Camp accepted an invitation to teach at AU, however, beginning in the fall of 1978. For the next ten years she taught piano and pedagogy there and also served as director of summer Suzuki Festivals. She also maintained a private studio of select piano students.

Beginning in 1988, Camp purchased and operated Hamel Music Company, assisted by her youngest daughter, Merrie Li. She also continued to teach piano on a limited basis. When the business closed in 1995, she continued to teach private lessons at home  and conduct workshops for piano teachers. Several of her students were featured as soloists with orchestras.

She was living in Berrien Springs,Michigan, when she died on March 9, 2023.


Sources: Information provided by Sandra Camp, 2007; Records on file in the music department at Walla Walla University; personal knowledge. See also biographies for Tonya Camp Wessman, Benjamin Gish, and Julia Gish Salerno