Senior Performer Seeks to Combine Academic and Musical Interests


David Cartolano, a senior at Manhattan College, is an evidence that when you are doing what you love, nothing is impossible and that you should never give up your passions.

Originally from Yonkers, N.Y., Cartolano is currently majoring in exercise science and minoring in music at Manhattan College. He is also president of the college’s Music Ministry, and is active in the MC Singers as well. But what is the common link between all of those things and how he is able to manage them all?

Cartolano started off his life wanting to be a musician. He has been singing, playing instruments and dancing all his life. However, while he was in high school, an internship program changed his life and helped him to find his new passion.

“In high school, I took a career and finance course, and physical therapy popped up on some of the questionnaires. So I got myself an internship through a program at my high school at the local physical therapy clinic. It changed my life. I knew I wanted to be a physical therapist,” he said.

After he knew what he wanted to do in his life, choosing a college was not a difficult decision for Cartolano.

“Manhattan College was right for me after the seventh tour. I liked the small class size and very friendly professors, and honestly you know when you know,” Cartolano said.  “I knew early on I wanted to apply to MC and only MC. It was the place I like the most, so why would I waste my time applying to other schools?”

After being admitted to the exercise science major at Manhattan College, Cartolano did not give up on his passion for music. He joined the Jazz Band, as well MC Singers. He has also been part of the Manhattan College Players.

Being an exercise science student and a performing artist at the same time helped him to learn that he has deep love for both and simply cannot have one without another.

Screen Shot 2018-04-22 at 1.18.24 PM
Cartolano will be attending Columbia University following his graduation in the spring. DAVID CARTOLANO / COURTESY

“As I was going through college, I felt like I was a performing artist being crammed into a science textbook. And on the flip side, when I was playing gigs and doing various performing arts events/clubs, I felt like an exercise science student being crammed into a music textbook,” he said.

Cartolano love for both music and physical therapy helped him to find his new dream; a dream that can make a difference in the world.

“My future goal is to build a health clinic for musicians, by musicians. I feel that would be more authentic to my purpose and to my future patients,” he said.  “Not only that, I want to have an online database for musicians whether they be vocalists or instrumentalists or dancers can find information to help themselves take care of their bodies. There is a lot of information out there, but is very disorganized and sometimes comes without a proper research base. I want to change that.”

Cartolano will keep following his dreams in New York City after his graduation this spring, as he will be attending Columbia University Medical Center for his Doctor of Physical Therapy.