June 8, 2012 (Jackson) - Two Belhaven University music students are on their way to a professional career as musicians with the Mississippi Symphony Orchestra (MSO).

Shellie Brown (2012) and senior Jocelyn Zhu are both violin performance majors who chose to audition at the Mississippi Symphony Orchestra National Audition on May 19. The MSO expanded their search nationally, but found talent from a neighboring university. After two rounds of the audition, they both won the MSO National Audition.

Song Xie, Associate Professor of Music, said, “I am very proud of Shellie and Jocelyn. This is a significant step towards their professional careers a musicians and it also shows the caliber of teaching we give to our music students at Belhaven University.”

Belhaven's Bachelor of Arts in Music: Performance Emphasis has helped prepare Brown and Zhu to pursue their dreams of performance as a career. Both Brown and Zhu now have a full-time, Core/A contract position and have officially become MSO core players this season with annual salaries and benefits.

The Mississippi Symphony Orchestra started on Belhaven's campus in 1960 and since then has grown into what it is today, full of talent and eager to share the love of music.

Belhaven stands among the select Christian colleges and universities that offer a unique general core curriculum encouraging the development of a personal worldview. The university believes a Christian worldview is a key to preparing men and women academically and spiritually to serve Christ Jesus in their careers, in human relationships, and in the world of ideas.

Founded in 1883, Belhaven University now serves over 3,000 students from campuses in Jackson, Memphis, Orlando, Houston, Chattanooga, Atlanta and online, offering traditional undergraduate degrees, graduate and adult degree programs, and online degree programs.