Nina was a young woman passionate about music, human rights and education of all people. During her short life she composed beautiful, startling, personal and passionate music all while often traveling, engaging and interacting with people from around the world.
In the wake of the tragic and senseless murder which cut her life short at the age of 29, family and friends were committed to remembering Nina as the remarkable person she was, and to do it in a way that would make her proud. And so, the Nina Elizabeth Nilssen Scholarship Fund began.
Founded in August 2010, the Fund is committed to supporting Nina’s love of the arts and her own commitment to art education in her life. As a graduate student in Musical Composition, Nina knew just how difficult it was to finance an art education and this Fund will endeavor to make that financial hurdle a little lower for deserving students like her in art education programs across the United States, and beyond.
As a world traveler Nina sought to explore many different cultures, but her trip to the Andes in 2009 had the most lasting impact on her desire to get involved locally. She was deeply moved by the people and their efforts to sustain a traditional life threatened by greed and social injustice. Speaking of the need to develop sustainable livelihoods, she expressed a wish to help children learn and develop their traditional arts which in turn would help preserve their culture and traditions. Inspired by Nina’s vision the Fund is determined to support these efforts.
She will be remembered as someone who had a keen interest in all aspects of life. Her short time here on earth revealed a caring, compassionate soul who downplayed her own talents and qualities, and instead choose to acknowledge and celebrate others rather than herself. This is the legacy she left, and now it has become a cornerstone of the The Nina Elizabeth Nilssen Scholarship Fund.