Class of 2020: Using music therapy to connect others

Class of 2020: Using music therapy to connect others

Amanda Brennen

Hometown: Roswell, GA.
 

What made you choose Georgia College? There are only two music therapy programs in Georgia, and I felt most excited after visiting Georgia College. I loved the campus, the faculty I met was so inviting and I was excited about the possible leadership opportunities I would have.
 

What made you want to study music therapy? My sophomore year at Roswell High, my literature teacher asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. At the time, I told her I wanted to be a physical therapist but that I would always keep music in my life and that I had a passion for working with individuals with disabilities. She told me her sister was a music therapist and that I should look into it. That day at lunch, I called my mom and we called a local music therapy private practice to see if I could observe. I went to volunteer and ended up working there for three years! I also did two music therapy internships during my senior year of high school.
 

What instruments do you play? My primary instruments are voice and piano. I also enjoy playing the guitar, ukulele, accordion, recorder, and the keytar.
 

What role does community play in your study of music therapy? Without community, there wouldn’t be music therapy. Music therapy can include many cultural and social differences. Music is known as a universal language that brings people together and builds communities. When it comes to being a music therapy student at Georgia College, we are with the same people all four years. The music therapy department has such a strong community full of encouragement, positivity, helpful resources and support. Every student is passionate about providing the best music therapy services to the community and becoming prepared to be a professional.
 

Amanda Brennen
Amanda Brennen

How important is the role of music therapy in today’s world during a pandemic—what about post pandemic? Music therapy has always been an important part of today’s world as the field continuously grows. Music therapy can work on communication, emotional expression, socialization, academics, motor skills and so much more. The pandemic has stemmed a lot of uncertainty in patients. During the pandemic and post pandemic, music therapy gives patients a sense of normalcy in their everyday, ever-changing schedules.
 

What music therapy projects/research/experiences were you able to partake in during your time at GC? Every semester, Georgia College music therapy students have to participate in practicum hours. I have done my practicum hours at the Veterans Home, Chaplinwood, The Early Learning Center and the Life Enrichment Center. Creative Expressions is a fantastic music therapy program through the Life Enrichment Center that I was a part of for three years. After you finish your course work, you have to do a 1,020 hour internship. I am about to complete my amazing internship at Therabeat, Inc. in Woodstock, GA. I also worked my way up from Secretary to Vice President to President of The Music Therapy Society at Georgia College.

What are your plans after graduation? At this time, I’m not sure what my plans are. The only thing I know for sure is that I am going to spend time studying for the music therapy board certification exam. I am thinking of possibly getting my masters in special education, music therapy, or occupational
therapy – but I am keeping my options open!