The Graduate String Quartet-in-Residence program began in 1982 under the tutelage of the world-famous Vermeer String Quartet, the members of which were NIU resident artist faculty until their retirement in 2007. The program is now continuing with the Avalon String Quartet, who were participants in the program in 1996-97 and are now our faculty quartet-in-residence.
A single graduate quartet is selected by competitive audition, and the individual members are admitted to the Master of Music or Performer's Certificate by the School of Music. Each member is awarded a graduate assistantship and full tuition waiver for the period of the residency. Since the program's inception, a number of young quartets have participated, and many have gone on to managed professional careers and/or artists-in-residence appointments at other universities.