You're smart to think about this now, because the key to winning scholarships is to start early. Scholarship donors generally look for 3 things: Outstanding grades, a clearly defined goal for college and a career, and a strong resume of extra curricular activities that support that goal. Starting as a freshman, you have time to work on those things so when you apply later on, you'll be a strong candidate. Make sure you maintain your grades--you don't have to be a straight A student, but you should aim to be at least in the B+ range. When you have a choice, make sure you choose courses that support your goal of being a musician (take as many music classes as you can, and make sure you ace them). Take advantage of any opportunities you can to improve your musical skills, even if that means investing in private instruction. You may be the first chair in your high school band class (that's great!), but when you apply to a private music college, you can expect that every other applicant will also be on that level. So, you'll have to be the best of the best when it comes to your skill with your instrument. So take advantage of any opportunities like studying at an arts high school, or interning with a local orchestra. Next, get involved with any extra-curricular activities you can that involve music. Of course you're going to play in the school band--but so will your competitors, so go the extra mile. Join a community orchestra or band. Start a garage jazz band. Volunteer to work with younger kids, or play for events at the senior center. Compose music for the clarinet. Or whatever you can think of that shows passion for music in general and the clarinet in particular. Try to participate in activities for a long period of time, and look for opportunities to show characteristics like growth, leadership, creativity, persistence, or initiative. Document all your work--take pictures, collect articles, make recordings, or whatever. Being able to show your enthusiasm visually can be a powerful tool. Finally, start to think about options. While it's good to have a solid goal, sometimes no matter what you do, it just doesn't pan out. So, give yourself some other ways to go. Think about what other careers you could have in music other than playing in a jazz band. (Playing in a symphony orchestra? Composing? Teaching? Promoting?) Also, don't pin all your hopes on one college in New York. There are a number of colleges around the country that you might not be familiar with that have outstanding music programs. Over the next couple of years, do all the research you can. You might find that there's a college that you never heard of that has a fantastic program and offers you a better financial aid package because they really want what you have to offer. A college that really needs an outstanding clarinet player is more likely to offer you a great scholarship than one that already has 100 outstanding clarinet players to choose from. There are quite a few techniques that will improve your chances of winning scholarships, so you should invest in a few of the guides that are out there. Ben Kaplan's "How to Go to College Almost for Free" is a good place to start. Another one to read is Tim Higgins' "Paying for College Without Sacrificing Your Retirement" which talks about how to select the right college and position your family's finances so you won't need as much aid (especially good if your family is middle or upper income). Good Luck!
Mom of an art student who won dozens of scholarships totaling $90,000, graduated almost debt free, and has never had a problem finding a job in her field.