Susan Slingland is currently the full time staff accompanist for the Hayes School of Music at Appalachian State University and has serves as graduate faculty for collaborative pianists. In addition, she initiated the creation of a Master's degree with a concentration in Collaborative Piano at Appalachian, which will begin in Fall 2012. Susan received her Doctorate of Musical Arts from the University of Maryland in Collaborative Piano with a dissertation entitled Twentieth Century Composers Influenced by Jewish Culture. She also received her Master of Music in the same program under the tutelage of Rita Sloan and Robert McCoy. Previously she studied at the Peabody Conservatory with Marian Hahn and received her undergraduate degree in visual art and piano performance, studying with Brian Ganz. She was a co-winner of the Young Artists' Auditions at Harmony Hall as well as a semi-finalist in the Altoona-Mozarteum Piano Competition. Susan has been a vocal coach for the Washington National Opera's Summer Institute as well as a substitute dance rehearsal pianist for main stage Washington National Opera productions. She was also a frequent staff accompanist for summer workshops at the University of Maryland for double bass, clarinet and flute, as well as one of two staff accompanists for the Maryland Distinguished Scholar Talent in the Arts Competition. While living in Maryland, she often accompanied chamber music recitals with members of the Army Field Band and Singing Sargeants. Susan received the inaugural Robert McCoy prize in instrumental collaboration for the University of Maryland's Ulrich Competition. She has also toured with the Portland (ME) Symphony Orchestra's chamber symphony concerts and has been rehearsal pianist and vocal coach for their annual Christmas concert. Susan was also honored to perform in the University of Maryland's Dominic Argento festival. Dr. Slingland spends her free time either with her husband and four dogs or helping to rescue other dogs - she has initiated popular animal-themed concerts at Appalachian, collaborating with students and faculty, to benefit local rescues.