Reflecting the Past, Looking to the Future

Last December, we set out with an idea and a hope that just a handful of people would be interested in that idea. To our surprise, many of our former classmates and coworkers jumped on board right away and helped spread the word in their own communities! This site has grown into way more than just a Song of the Week provider. We have made new contacts with professionals who have shared with us their unique clinical and creative insight into our field. We have explored areas of Music Therapy that we were unfamiliar with. The information we have gained as interviewers and the practice we have had as writers have made this year invaluable. We would like to express our deepest gratitude to our followers who have made us feel like the work we do is beneficial, and to the professionals and interns who have given us their time and shared our writing within their own circles.  

There is so much to celebrate this holiday season!  In this post, we are celebrating the good things that have happened, how we have grown, and what we are looking forward to in the new year.  Thank you for your time, for sticking with us over the last 12 months, and for joining us in the Challenge!!

 

Looking Back
As far as the numbers go, our site has seen a wide spectrum. Here are the highlights of our successes:

Blog Stats:
Followers = 37
Facebook Page = 57 Likes
Twitter = 51 followers
Tweets = 22
Most popular month = November, 193 visitors
11/09 – 11/15 = 85 visitors

What goals we started with:

 

  • Creating a resource for other professionals to increase their repertoire
  • Learning 1 new song/week
  • Creating a space for collaboration
  • Hearing other professional’s stories (interviews)
  • Creating an opportunity for professional growth
  • Call to action: “Challenge” to engage 

Significant Moments
Catherine
Over the past year, we have had the opportunity to connect with and learn from so many amazing professionals/students/interns in our field, and each interviewing experience gave us unique appreciations for aspects of practicing and studying Music Therapy. I (Catherine) had a really valuable experience during my phone interview with Rachel Rambach. Not only is she a professional I have been inspired by, but on the interview level she impressed me with her intentionality of every word she spoke in our conversation, which encouraged me to work towards the same standard of speech in my day to day interactions. We were also able to connect on the Mom level, sharing stories about our kids and our sleep deprived newborn days.
My interview with Alyson Rayburn was unique and insightful in a different way because the topic we were discussing was completely new to me. I had never met a Music Therapist who was also a Registered Marriage and Family counselor. The way she described to me her intertwining of two professions and use of her diverse skills to help her patients. really opened my eyes to a unique area of Music Therapy; as well as information about the school where she studied.
The Monthly Theme that hit home the most for me was Military Populations. If you read my interview with Hannah Bronson, MT-BC back in August, or any of my posts throughout that month, you will know that this population is close to my heart. Even more than that, very fused with my life at this time.

Becky
Going back and reading my first post on this blog was eye opening!  I was sharing my, “Yes,” to opening myself up to all of you, sharing my experiences, my thoughts, and my life as a music therapist.  And my collaboration on this blog has become so much more than just sharing my life, it has enriched my life.  I too, have learned about different branches of music therapy that I hadn’t been as aware of alongside of Catherine, and you, our dear readers!  

One interview that I really enjoyed conducting was with Katy Gorski.  Katy was my Co-Intern at my music therapy internship.  I really enjoyed speaking with her in April, because it was wonderful to hear where she was on her clinical journey!  As we both primarily work with individuals with Developmental Disabilities (in our internship, and now), this interview was one of the interviews that I felt the most prepared for.  I know the population.  I knew what to ask.  I knew what to expect, and could formulate probing follow-up questions for my initial questions.  Also, it was wonderful to be talking with a professional that I respect, and that has become such a good friend!!

The interview that I found to be fun to write was my interview with Samantha Sinai.  I found during this interview that both Samantha and I had held similar beliefs in relation to our outlook of music therapy.  While I listened to the interview again (as, I had recorded her interview), it was so powerful, and inspiring to me at that time in my professional life.  I was just completing my second month in my first job as a music therapist.  As I told her at the time, I needed to hear the wisdom she was sharing with me during that interview.

The monthly theme that I found to be so helpful was Organizational Technology with Rachel Rambach!  I am someone who needs a system and an order to get work done.  And, hearing about

 

Looking Forward

We believe that this site can be a valuable resource to our professional community, so we are thinking big for our growth! By the end of the year, we would love to have

100 fb likes, 100 followers, 100 twitter followers, 1 tweet/week (or blog post).

The way we intend to accomplish this goal is by continuing to reach out to professionals for interviews, spreading the word about our blog via Music Therapy forums and online communities, participating in the yearly Social Media Advocacy Month in January, and coming up with our own logo and information card to share with people we meet at work, conferences, and educational settings.

These things aside, the biggest thing we would like to focus on is continued development of this site as a valuable resource and providing quality information and tools to our followers.

When we started this site, we intended it to be a place where our followers could join in and share their own insights on the monthly themes as well as cover videos of the songs we spotlight each week. In 2016 we look forward developing this community more: on the site in the comments, on the Facebook page, the YouTube Channel, and other places on the internet.  The blog will continue to be a resource.  At the same time, we are ready to open the door to you all to more actively join in the conversation!

What to Look For in 2016
We have a number of exciting things to look forward to with 2016! First and foremost, Catherine will be appearing on Musictherapyed.com’s Mindstorm Monday on January 4th to share information about the Music Therapy Repertoire Challenge. We are hoping to spread the word about our blog as well as seek inspiration for more themes, populations, and focus areas to cover. Please plan on attending the conversation!

We also have many new ideas for our monthly themes in 2016 (due to an overload of successful brainstorming this past year). We are going to cover several new populations as well as specific professional and musical skills. We cannot wait to share with you these new topics, and hope you will find them useful to your growth as a clinician and musician in 2016.
Even though we have many ideas, if there was something within the scope of music therapy we missed this year that you are passionate about, please fill out THIS FORM or feel free to email us at mtrepertoirechallenge@gmail.com.  We will do our best to incorporate all suggestions made to us, so don’t hold back! Whether your suggestions are potential interviewees who are doing exciting things in the field, or specific clinical/musical skills, or genres that you find to be crucial to your practice, or even genres that you need help incorporating into your practice.  It’s a part of our mission to encourage creativity through conversations on topics pertaining to music therapy.

Along the same lines, something new we are going to offer this year is a call for guest posts by anyone who is interested. Whether you would like to share with us your expertise on a particular topic or choose our song of the week, send us an email and we will set that up! Or comment on a post and let us know you are interested, we will contact you! If you are interested in sharing or choosing repertoire, but you do not want to do the actual writing, we can set up a formal interview with you when it fits into our planned subject areas.

 

To summarize, thank you everyone for your continued reading and support of what we write! Please consider filling out this form to ensure we are covering areas of interest to all our followers.
We wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! See you in 2016!

Catherine and Becky

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2 thoughts on “Reflecting the Past, Looking to the Future

    1. Hey Hannah! Thanks so much! 🙂 It’s an honor to have the opportunity and the platform to create these resources for everyone to access and use!

      Like

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