UW-Parkside graduate shines bright

Haley Klinkhammer walks down by the water.

MARK WEBER | mcgui018@rangers.uwp.edu

“Words are the hardest part of every situation”, croons singer/songwriter Haley Klinkhammer in her most recent music video entitled, “In the Cold”. She tours college campuses all around the country performing a mix of original and cover songs that have been delighting fans since she was fourteen years old. She graduated from UW-Parkside in May of 2015 with a Bachelor of Arts degree not in music, but in communications, with a conflict negotiation and resolution certificate. Her degree plays a large role in the artist she is today.

Close to home

Klinkhammer decided to come to UW-Parkside after attending Tremper High School in Kenosha, Wisconsin.  Her family lived in the area, where her father was a police officer.  She decided on UW-Parkside for a variety of reasons.  It was close to home, so she could commute and save money on food and board. She was the first person in her family to pursue a bachelors degree, originally intending to follow in her father’s footsteps. She wanted the support of her family as well as a university that was diverse. She wanted the separation between being a student and being a performer.

Haley quickly decided that criminal justice was not going to be her major. She took her general education classes, debating what she wanted to major in, while questioning her decision to continue school.

“It was hard, you know? I mean, general education classes are not always the most fun, and I felt like I was not really doing what I wanted,” said Klinkhammer.

That was until she took a 100 level communication course with former professor John Moore. She says that she knew almost right away that communication was the path she wanted to follow.

Klinkhammer stated, “It kind of just clicked… Professor Moore had a way that was so unique about him with his accent and his wacky demonstrations. I thought to myself, ‘This is what I want to pursue.’”

Professional success

Haley currently has two extended play albums (EP), and one long play (LP) out. She has over a million combined views on YouTube of all of her videos. Her career is performing covers and original music. She performed live in Kenosha on October 8th at the Fall Fest Block Party to an enthusiastic crowd made up of new and old fans alike.

Separating work from play

Klinkhammer explains why she majored in communications instead of music: “I love music; I have loved music since I was young. I didn’t want to take something I love and attach it to the demands of having to do it, you know?  I didn’t want to take something I love, and turn it into a chore, so I decided on communication, and I am glad I did.”

She went on to say that the communication program helped her realize that we are all people going through our own things, but at the same time, we need each other.

That realization helped her become more comfortable and confident on stage and in her song writing. Haley Klinkhammer may not be a superstar, but she embodies a lot of what UW-Parkside is about. She is using her degree creatively, diversely, and positively, one note at a time.

If you want to learn more about Haley Klinkhammer’s music you can find her on YouTube and Twitter at haleybop5726, on Facebook page at HaleyKlinkhammer, or her personal website www.haley-klinkhammer.com.

Photo credit: Haley Klinkhammer

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