Somehow it’s already been a full month since the Southeastern Region of American Music Therapy Association (AMTA) Conference was held in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Remarkably there were over three hundred music therapy folks that gathered despite changed dates and locations that the regional conference committee and leadership resolved.
The trip began earlier in the day because of a delightful opportunity that PMT enjoyed... mingling at a networking breakfast hosted by ASC Greenway in Fort Mill, SC. Since then PMT has partnered to become a Business Blitzer through the Anne Springs Close - Greenway and enjoyed networking with fellow Blitzers and Trailblazers in our community who share passions for keeping green space, enjoying and preserving nature.
On a personal most it was most restful staying off of the conference hotel site to catch up with local family. Many memories surrounded their piano pictured at left, from holiday rituals to family get togethers, plus new ones from sight-reading pieces stored in the bench. One of the highlights of music therapy trainings and conferences is the incorporation of music making and instruments since that is the craft with which we hone. This home away from home helped fill my enjoyment of spontaneously making music outside of clinical or instructional applications.
Some of the educational highlights in Chattanooga included dynamic concurrent sessions especially by hospice and bereavement clinicians. I was impressed by many of the research poster sessions that I visited and was proud to know many of the students and a newly certified music therapist through my work as a clinical supervisor at a nearby music therapy training program.
An appealing draw on Friday after the closing session was discounted continuing education trainings. I opted for the ethics course and only regretted the winding journey home through the mountains at nighttime!
A refreshing amenity at the conference hotel was fruit infused water available every day. Pictured on the left is a glass dispenser at a local restaurant that boasted having several of these. Each dispenser required dozens of pineapples - that's a lot of prep! Work conferences that have healthy perks incorporated are always delightful. Having attended this year's regional conference without one of my children in tandem, it was also restorative catching up on uninterrupted sleep.
Reuniting with music therapy mentors, colleagues and friends is a privilege and a huge appeal to attending music therapy conferences. There were several important meeting sprinkled throughout the three days such as state business, regional business and continuing discussion for master's level entry in the profession. Plus at the awards luncheon and portions of meetings it was exciting to celebrate the successes of role models in our region including retirement and being awarded for supervising over one hundred music therapy interns... congrats again to Dr. Beth York at Converse College and Betsy Neal at Palmetto Health Baptist!
The same timeframe was nostalgic for me since the Mid-Atlantic Region of AMTA was hosting its conference in Pittsburgh PA. I appreciated following photos and updates through social media and friends still living in the area who attended the conference held at the scenic location of Station Square. As my undergrad program at Duquesne University and first music therapy job was near Downtown, I was reminiscing about the three rivers and the vibrant community of creative and expressive arts folks.
In conclusion, I am grateful to be an active member of the state, regional and national associations of AMTA. It is through these networks that I receive support and mentorship with my private practice that is continuing to serve the Greater Charlotte Area of the Carolinas. We are fortunate to have our own ADA compliant clinic space in South Charlotte, NC. Stay tuned for some open houses coming later this summer to drop-in for a casual meet and greet or music making.
Thanks for following along to read PMT's blog and hearing a recap of the south eastern regional conference in Tennessee. It is with your interest and support that PMT can continue music therapy services, music instruction, in-services and continuing education for music therapy professionals and students... now reaching beyond the Charlotte Metro Area by offering its first online CMTE Course through The Certification Board for Music Therapists "Aging, Intellectual Disabilities, and Implications for Music Therapists."
Providing music therapy services for early childhood to older adults, music instruction and enrichment plus continuing music therapy education in Greater Charlotte Area of the Carolinas