Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Help the SMWC Music Therapy Program Raise Funds!

St. Mary-of-the-Woods College Music Therapy in the Valley

When students in the Music Therapy programs at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College enter the clinical phase of their education, they train as student music therapists in Wabash Valley agencies that serve individuals with emotional, developmental, or physical disabilities. They work with adults and children with psychiatric disorders, intellectual and developmental disabilities, speech and hearing impairments, physical disabilities, and neurological impairments, among others. Music therapy has been a recognized profession in the United States since the 1940's and therapists are increasingly working in health care delivery, such as hospice care, substance abuse programs, oncology treatment centers, pain/stress management clinics, and correctional settings. As they train to be Board-Certified Music Therapists, SMWC students learn to involve participants in musical experiences that help them reach their physical, developmental, social, cognitive, or emotional goals.

Rhythm is at the core of several approaches to music therapy. Many world percussion instruments (African, Latin American, etc.) are easily interactive and provide both rhythm and harmony. For example, individuals with Alzheimer's Disease have been found to respond to rhythm into the late stages of the disease; rhythm is also basic to gait, speech, and other physiological functions. Therefore, percussion is valuable in group and individual therapeutic settings.

SMWC offers baccalaureate and Master's degrees in Music Therapy and will offer the nation's first distance-learning music therapy equivalency program for people with undergraduate music degrees in fall 2012. Community support of $820 will provide a shekere (West-African gourd-shaped instrument covered in a beaded net), a string cajon drum (Afro-Peruvian box-shaped drum), a Conga drum set (Cuba), and an alto xylophone (Africa, Asia) to broaden the inventory of percussion instruments used by students in all of these programs.

If you are interested in donating to this project, please click this link. for more information!

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