Students from Saint Columbkille Partnership School performed at Sing It to the Heights. (Photos by Yiting Chen)

Tate Haynes ’21 won the 15th annual Sing It to the Heights competition, receiving the most votes from the audience for his performance of the song “River” by Leon Bridges. 

The event, held February 28, raised $4,140 for the music program at Saint Columbkille Partnership School, a Catholic elementary school in Brighton operated by the St. Columbkille Parish, the Archdiocese of Boston, and Boston College.

Tate Haynes

2019 Sing It to the Heights winner Tate Haynes '21.

What began as an informal lip-synching contest in the Chocolate Bar 15 years ago has grown into an “American Idol”-style singing benefit held in Robsham Theater and judged by a panel of three Boston College Jesuits.

Haynes, a quarterback/defensive back for the Boston College football team, was one of 10 BC students selected among the four undergraduate classes to participate in the event after auditioning in January; contestants included members of BC a cappella groups such as the Common Tones, Heightsmen, and BC Dynamics.

This year’s judges were St. Ignatius Church Associate Pastor Donald MacMillan, S.J., Cesar Muziotti, S.J., and School of Theology and Ministry graduate student Martin Ngo, S.J.

The funds generated from previous Sing It to the Heights competitions have made it possible for the Saint Columbkille Partnership School to establish and sustain a music program that serves K-8 students, purchase musical instruments, and provide free music lessons to more than 70 students.

“We so value our long-standing partnership with the Saint Columbkille Partnership School,” said Shelby Johnson, a graduate assistant in the Office of Student Involvement. “This year, we were intentional about developing a greater connection between our two student populations through a pen pal program. Each student from our Emerging Leader Program was paired with a student at Saint Columbkille, and have exchanged letters to get to know one another.”

When the Junior and Select Choirs from Saint Columbkille Partnership School performed during the Sing It to the Heights, some were able to meet their BC pen pals.

“Boston College students embrace our students and make them feel special,” said Saint Columbkille Head of School William Gartside. “It is good for college students to think beyond their own ambitions and become mindful of the needs of others. The Boston College community has always done this with passion. 

“It is important that our students have as much exposure to the University as possible,” he added. “In so doing, they will develop high aspirations for higher education. If you ask a classroom of our students where they want to go to college, ‘Boston College’ is the answer we hear over and over again.”

Sing It to the Heights is sponsored by the Emerging Leader Program, Robsham Theater, the Office of Governmental and Community Affairs, and the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs.

–Christine Balquist | University Communications