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Berklee Creates Al Schmitt Engineering Scholarship

Berklee has announced the creation of the Al Schmitt Engineering Scholarship for students of its Music Production and Engineering Department.

Al Schmitt
Al Schmitt

Boston, MA (November 29, 2021)—Arguably the most influential and decorated recording engineer ever, with 150 gold and platinum albums and 20 Grammys to his name, Al Schmitt left an incredible legacy behind when he passed in April this year at the age of 91. That legacy continues to be added to now with the founding of the Al Schmitt Engineering Scholarship at Berklee.

Established by the Music Production and Engineering Department through a $50,000 donation from the endowment fund of former Berklee faculty member Wayne Wadhams, the scholarship will support students majoring in MP&E who are financially and academically deserving and have the potential to make a significant contribution to society through the art and craft of audio engineering and record production. The tuition-based scholarship will be awarded to one student per year, with the inaugural recipient set to be announced in fall 2022.

Al Schmitt Passes at 91

“Al Schmitt would be so honored and pleased, as is his family, at making the scholarship available,” said his wife, Lisa Schmitt. “We can think of no greater way to celebrate Al than to financially assist those attending Berklee who want to follow in his footsteps.”

Schmitt passed away on April 26, 2021. In a career spanning more than 60 years, he won 20 Grammy Awards, two Latin Grammys, and a Trustees Grammy for Lifetime Achievement in 2006.

“There are no two words on the planet more synonymous with excellence in recording than Al Schmitt,” said Daniel M. Thompson, assistant chair of Music Production and Engineering. “Over decades, Al has come to define the art of the craft, and at the same time I can think of few engineers or producers who have been as universally beloved as Al, for his wit, his wisdom, and his warmth as a person. We are thrilled to be able to help preserve Al’s legacy while lifting up the next generation through the Al Schmitt Engineering Scholarship at Berklee.”