The purpose of Major Chords for Minors is to provide opportunity for youth to explore and cultivate their musical talent through private music instruction and to build a better community through our children.

How we do this:

• By giving free private instruction on piano, guitar, and drums to children
• By creating a safe and friendly environment for children to learn
• By supplying instruments to children for practice
• By maintaining a studio for children to practice, learn and socialize
• By providing supplemental income for local performing musicians and college students


Major Chords for Minors™ (MCFM) was created and founded to provide one-on-one music lessons on piano, guitar, and drums to at-risk kids whose families cannot afford to give their children lessons. It was incepted February 2010 and became a federally recognized 501(c)3 non-profit July 14, 2011. Federal ID #90-0624610

Mission: Building better children through music. Vision: A community where all children have access to growth through music and mentorship, regardless of their families’ economic circumstances.

Since founding in 2011, Major Chords for Minors (MCFM) has provided free music instruction to at-risk kids from low-income families living in Saginaw, Michigan.

MCFM’s holistic mission of building better children through music, and therefore a stronger community, has guided activity and decision-making across our organization. Here’s how we embody this mission:

MCFM answers our community’s larger need for year-round safe and supervised spaces for children. In Saginaw, we welcome children during the hours of operation to participate in art, get a helping hand with homework, play games, practice, and socialize with friends.

MCFM has worked diligently to grow opportunities for our students to serve the community through music performance, recognizing not only the benefits to local audiences, but also the numerous musical and extra-musical benefits public performance opportunities have for our children.

MCFM works to extend its reach, opening it’s first satellite studio in Bay City, Michigan.


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Tiffany Wika
Mini Minors Instructor

Tiffany is proud to be an instructor at Major Chords for Minors, currently teaching classes for ages 3-5.
She seeks to create an environment where children can feel supported as they try new things and explore their creativity.
Tiffany has been teaching mini minors classes for one year, having recently moved to Michigan from Oklahoma.
She brings a variety of experience and training in classical music.Tiffany is active in music throughout the region, as both a singer and piano accompanist.

Sonja Cissell

Mini Minors Director

With five years of experience teaching elementary music, including directing elementary school choirs and Orff ensembles, Sonja has always recognized the importance of music education for young children.

She also directs the children’s Christmas musical at her church and is a member of the worship team.

Her passion for music education and the impact it can make on children’s lives has her thrilled to be able to team up with Major Chords for Minors to offer Major Chords for Mini Minors to the community.

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John Vowell III,

President, Co-Founder/Executive Director

Katrina Vowell

Director,Co-founder/Managing Director

Allysha Guldonzoph

Manager, White’s Bar

Scott Bryant,

Vice President,Saginaw Bay Underwriters

Bessie Bone,

Doctor of Pharmacy, Healthsource Saginaw

This website was updated by Matthew Keith-Kapono Smith as a student at Saginaw Valley State University based off an original design from Blake Johnson and Cardinal Solutions!