Making a Difference with Music: Music Therapy Undergraduate Program

Making a Difference with Music: Music Therapy Undergraduate Program


a successful music therapy student is
going to have a spark they want to use music to help serve others and in their
background they’re gonna have some experience serving others they also are
going to be students that take initiative or are willing to rise to
challenges we have a seven semester curriculum which is unique within that
seven semesters we start with an introduction to music therapy which
gives an overview of the field and then we have classes like music therapy
musicianship where we ground people in the basic musicianship skills of guitar
and and ukulele and then couple that with clinical foundation and we’re able
to work together with nurses and with physical therapists, occupational
therapists, pharmacy students, to learn together in our professions learning
what our scope of practice is as well as learning what their scope of practice is
and how we can bring our sets of expertise together to work with patients
so in music therapy specifically that has entailed working with mental health
nurse practitioners who are studying for their licensure and their professional
certification; there are opportunities for a clinical experience and that clinical
experience means that you will be supervised by a music therapist who is
practicing and those clinical experiences could happen in nursing
homes and hospitals and acute psychiatric units in residential
treatment facilities our students are really coming with a performance
identity but also gaining a therapeutic identity and those two together are a
wonderful match participation in jazz ensembles here has helped enhance my
creativity when it comes to designing session plans and creating interventions
for a group setting of clients something that we do a lot of here is rearranging
popular music so we’ll take R&B and pop songs and we’ll make them more like
jazz or we’ll take jazz standards and we’ll arrange them to fit more of an R&B and pop style the way that translates into music therapy is
that helps me to create session plans that work for a group of clients so
right now I’m at Winchester Medical Center and I’m in an impatient behavioral
health unit we have people who are 18 all the way up to 60 in one group so
they like a lot of different types of music so being able to arrange something
to fit one style but also make everyone’s musical palette happy is
something I’ve learned music therapy students in the Shenandoah program have
been able to travel to Krems in Austria for World Congress of Music Therapy
they’ve also been to Japan Tsukuba and Tokyo and Kyoto and then
they have also been able to be part of various service projects in Guatemala in
2020 the World Congress will be in South Africa and we’re planning a global
education learning trip for that as well Shenandoah offers a lot of different
opportunities for travel whether that’s studying abroad or there’s a lot of just
individual classes that are offered abroad my sophomore year I went to
Argentina with the Symphony Orchestra and then over the summer I went to
Scotland and took a class that satisfied a Gen Ed credit my favourite part about
going to Guatemala was definitely meeting and interacting and connecting
with the beautiful children from there and for them to experience their first
music class that they had ever taken and for them to see a ukulele for the first
time was something really really magical and there was just so much love around
between us and the children and their teachers and it’s definitely a time that
I’m gonna remember for the rest of my life our incoming students have the
opportunity to hit the ground running when it comes to being involved in music
therapy experiences Chimers is a really really great opportunity for music
therapy students and you get experience interacting and working with adults with
disabilities you get experience playing in a small pit orchestra
conducting an ensemble and also arranging popular music Shenandoah is a
place that’s filled with life and with musical creativity and we need somebody
like you to add to that

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