The Akron Symphony Orchestra is currently accepting nominations for its inaugural Music Educator of the Year Award.

This award will be presented by Music Director Christopher Wilkins at the Nov. 18 concert at E. J. Thomas Hall. The honored music teacher will be selected by a panel of qualified judges from our regional area.

The nominee must be a certified/licensed music teacher in a public, private or parochial classroom setting in grades kindergarten through 12. Nominees must teach in Cuyahoga, Medina, Portage, Stark or Summit counties.

A $500 prize, sponsored by the Fairlawn School of Music, will be awarded to the winning teacher's respective music program in his or her name.

The purpose of this award is to promote a greater understanding of and appreciation for the value of music education in our schools. It seeks to honor those music teachers who make a real difference through their dedication and involvement to the stability and growth of music education in their communities.

Nominees should be music teachers who:

Instill a lifelong appreciation of music in their students;

Inspire their students to attain high levels of musical understanding and ability;

Make a significant impact on their communities through music education;

Extend their efforts and influence beyond the classroom; and

Foster a love of music and make a lasting impact in the lives of their students from all levels of ability and background.

All nominees will be recognized in the Nov. 18 concert program and will receive two free tickets to the concert. The teacher chosen to receive this award will receive four free tickets to the concert. The person who nominated the award winner will also receive a free ticket.

Nomination forms are available by visiting the Akron Symphony Orchestra's website at akronsymphony.org, and are also available by contacting Orzella Matherson, Community Engagement and Education Coordinator, at 330-535-8131.

Nominations must be returned to the Akron Symphony office by June 1.