Thursday, November 8, 2012

SMWC Music Therapy Faculty and Students Attend National Music Therapy Conference

October 11-14, 2012, was an exciting time in St. Charles, Illinois. Music therapists from around the country gathered for the 2012 American Music Therapy Association  National Conference entitled “Changing Winds: Innovation in Music Therapy”.

SMWC professors dancing in
 celebration of Clive Robbins
 Highlights from the conference include a Celebration of Life event in honor of the late Clive Robbins, a music therapy visionary and co-developer of the Nordoff-Robbins Music Therapy approach, and the AMTA Research Committee’s featured panels on special populations. Dr. Tracy Richardson, Director of SMWC Music Therapy, wrote a song called "Believe in the Music" and performed it for the Robbins event. Two SMWC music therapy seniors (Cathleen Flynn and Laura Kempton) served as student volunteers, distributing and collecting instruments for the concurrent sessions, while Sherry Bube, junior, placed 1st Runner Up in the Student Essay Contest. The theme for the essay contest was “Growing as a Music Therapist Through My Membership in AMTA”. She received a research flash drive which has compiled music therapy research from 1964-2008.

Says Bube, “Through my membership in AMTA, I am able to network with my peers and future colleagues and gain experience and insight into developments in research and treatment within the field. Membership means that I am supporting my conviction and belief in the practice of music therapy. …I am part of a beautiful and inspiring association that strives to provide valuable services for members as well as potential clients.”

SMWC undergraduate music therapy students who attended
Many other members of the Woods music therapy community attended conference with Bube and her undergraduate peers – Sharon Boyle (Associate Professor and Coordinator of Undergraduate Music Therapy), Tracy Richardson (Professor and Director of Masters in Music Therapy), graduate students, alumni, and adjunct faculty also participated. On the last evening of conference, this varied and vibrant group gathered on the crowded second floor of an Irish pub/grill for the “Woods Dinner”, a long-standing national conference tradition. The stories that were exchanged, toasts that were shared, and laughter and memories that filled the room embodied the tradition of excellence in music therapy education at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College spanning three decades. Beyond academics, Music Therapy at the Woods brings people together and creates connections which last a lifetime.

Music Therapy colleagues at conference

--written by Cathleen Flynn, senior, and edited by Sharon R. Boyle, Associate Professor of Music Therapy

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