Student Spotlight: Tom Faron

Tom Faron

Tom Faron
Major: Associate in General Studies

Music is Tom Faron's life.

As the lead singer and guitarist for his band, Waiting for the Elevator, Faron is driven to succeed in the music industry. However, he also recognizes the quality of an education, so he's working toward his degree at College of DuPage.

"I'm not sure what major I want to pursue, so right now my schedule is a mix between general education and music classes," he said. "Whichever career path I choose, I know music will be a major part of it."

A huge fan of the band Green Day, Faron understands the hard work needed to succeed on his own.

"Following their history, I've learned that they started out without a penny to their name and they worked very hard both to improve their songs and getting their name out there until they became one of the biggest bands in the world, if not the biggest in some years," he said. "The music classes I'm taking at COD are helping me improve my ability to read music, which is both a personal goal and beneficial in the long run. For example, I'll be able to figure out what key songs are in and learn how to play them faster than if I didn't know how to read as well, especially on piano. The music industry is highly competitive, so I'll take any advantage I can get to stand out from other musicians."

Faron is also a Presidential Scholar, having received a two-year, full-tuition scholarship to COD.

"I'm honored to be a Presidential Scholar. Although it's hard work, the rewards are well worth it," he said. "The college experience as a whole is much more valuable if students apply themselves and get involved in activities outside of class, which essentially is what being a Presidential Scholar is all about. I learn more by striving for the 'A' versus just aiming to pass and am meeting more great people outside of class through the volunteer work I'm doing."

Faron plans to earn his Associate in General Studies degree and the Audio Production certificate. He'd then like to learn everything there is to know about the music business, from recording to touring with a band.

"This is ultimately because I want to tour with my own band some day and try to make that my full-time career," he said. "Because that career path is somewhat of a gamble, there are other options I've considered. I could record other artists, or become a 'sound guy' for other bands while they are out on their own tours.

"I recommend College of DuPage to students who are trying to decide where to go. Don't underestimate the level of work required in the classes here just because it's not a four-year university. Many of these classes are based on the same material/book that a four-year university uses."

More about the Associate in General Science degree