2019 (aka BEST. YEAR. EVER.): A Year in Review

I started this blog post back in December 2019 but I am finally getting around to finishing it so it can be published. 2020 is here but I would like to take some time to reflect on the year that was 2019. The year had its ups and downs but 2019 may have been the “BEST YEAR EVER” for me. Here are some of the major highlights and milestones that happened last year.

Baby Elliott

The first and by far the best thing to happen this year was the birth of my son Elliott. I can’t get enough of him and I am blessed to have him in my life.

Steel band grant

I received a grant from the Louisiana Board of Regents supporting the purchase of instruments to start a steel band at NSU.


This major milestone was a long time coming. In May I finally graduated with my DMA from the University of Iowa. You can now refer to me as Dr. Molina

Marimba owner

As a graduation present from my parents, they bought me a 5.0 octave marimba (Yamaha 5100). Now I can practice at home instead of school. Thanks, mom and dad!

International Artist

I made my first trip to Europe and became an international performing artist at the 2019 College Music Society International Conference in Belgium.


I got to design one of the Spirit of Northwestern’s half-time shows. As a huge MCU fan, I crafted the show after Endgame was released and I am proud of the final product. Catch the show here.

Education Committee Chair

I was selected to serve as chair of the PAS Education Committee. I am proud to be a part of PAS and lead in this capacity.

pasic 2019

I brought an ensemble to compete in the Concert Chamber Competition and they won first place. I couldn’t believe it when they announced it at the awards ceremony but I am so proud of my students and all of their hard work. Watch their performance from PASIC on the NSU Percussion YouTube channel.

Concerto Competition

I believe this is the first time a percussionist has won the concerto competition at NSU. My student Miguel Bustillo had the highest score and will be performing the second (well, now third) movement of the Séjourné marimba concerto.

The “BEST YEAR EVER” may have been 2019 but I am sure there is so much more in store for the future. I am looking forward to what 2020 will bring. Thanks for reading!

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