Regional Conference Proposals

Hello SER-AMTAS Students! This is your president speaking. Three things:

1. We have a regional facebook page now! Please like the page; we’ll keep you updated on the goings-on in our region, especially as regional conference approaches. Here’s the ink:

2. Regional conference is coming up, March 21-23, 2013! It’s taking place in Chattanooga, Tennessee at a beautiful historic hotel in the downtown area. Registration online begins January 1. If you’re a student member of AMTA and you register before February 27, it’s only $70 ($95 for non-members)! Students in our region comprise almost half of the membership of SER-AMTA, which is great! Let’s try to get as many students to Chattanooga as possible.

3. We are now accepting conference session proposals from any interested in presenting at regional conference. If you have an idea of something to present, go to this page: Fill out the “Student Conference Proposal Form” and send it to I encourage you all to send in a proposal! Also on that site you’ll find other information about presenting, like the fact that there will be projectors available. I really want to see a strong student presence at conference this year. Let’s wow the rest of the members with our awesomeness!

Keep checking back for more conference updates!

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Music therapy moving towards a masters degree profession?

Hey, guys, it’s your new President-Elect, Freddy! I’m here to give you an update on things MT related. As some of you may remember, at this past regional conference in Charlotte there was a discussion during the town hall meeting about whether or not the profession of music therapy should require a masters degree in order practice. In the history of education and clinical training in the music therapy profession, a baccalaureate degree in music therapy (or its equivalent) has been required for entry into the field. As the profession is now considering the possibility of moving to requiring a master’s degree in music therapy as the minimum educational requirement for professional entry, many questions have been raised in relation to what a master’s entry educational program might look like. The Education and Training Advisory Board (ETAB) recognizes that there are a variety of educational models for preparing music therapists for master’s-level entry into the profession.

Many educators, clinicians, and researchers have reported that the bachelor’s degree is “bursting at the seams” and does not provide adequate preparation for the practice of music therapy as it exists today. With the bachelor’s degree as the entry level, the burgeoning body of knowledge required to meet the professional competencies exceeds the ability of the music therapy degree programs to effectively teach this expanded body of knowledge and skills. It is unrealistic to hold the expectation for the student to assimilate this knowledge and be prepared for competent professional practice. As a result, fulfillment of AMTA’s mission to provide quality music therapy services is compromised.

An emerging trend in university programs toward developing master’s degrees in music therapy is evident. More and more university programs are envisioning the growth of the current professional degree at the bachelor’s level to an advanced level of training that is both marketable and supportive of professional practice and ethics in the health related fields. Based on the current body of knowledge and research in the profession, as well as the growth in the scope of practice, the breadth and depth of education and training in music therapy required for entry into the profession needs to be expanded to a more advanced level. This will require some basic foundations in music therapy to serve as prerequisites to the advanced level curricula, either at the undergraduate level or at the graduate level, with more course credits required in the degree program in addition to and beyond the requirements for the master’s degree. It is important to note that these basic foundations requirements should not be confused with the “equivalency” as currently described in the AMTA Standards. Because the equivalency is by definition “equivalent to a bachelor’s degree,” it would no longer exist if the master’s degree were to become the entry level to the profession and educational requirement for the MT-BC credential.

As future music therapist, how do you feel about the situation? Are you for or against? Do you intend on getting your masters at some point?

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Facebook and E-Professionalism

Hey SER-AMTAS Students!

I wanted to share with you about an interesting and relevant session I went to presented by Dr. Joke Bradt. I’m often fascinated by the increasing presence of social networking in our culture, and I was drawn to this presentation. It turned out to be quite eye-opening, and with technology blossoming as it is, it’s important to make sure our new found internet tools turn around and bite us in the you-know-what.

Most of the session focused on Facebook, seeing as it’s become so widely used, and how it’s affecting the professional world.

Dr. Joke began with some stunning statistics from a study done with medical students at the University of Florida. Of the profiles assessed:

– 37.5% had their profiles private

– 46% showed users drinking

– 45% showed users engaged in unhealthy behaviors

– 43% showed users relationship status

– 37% showed users sexual orientation

– 16% showed users religious views

– 10% showed users drunk

Consider the possible ramifications of having inappropriate content on your Facebook. Many of us are Facebook friends with graduate students, current or past teachers, practicum advisers, etc. on Facebook- what information is available to them? These are people that don’t need to know your personal business, and unfortunately, Facebook has a way of making the lines between your personal life and your professional image blurry. Also, these people could become future employers… do your future employers need to know your religious preference, relationship status, and what you did today?  Not really. And those things are more or less inviting people to make judgements about you based on incomplete information. Who wants that from anyone, especially from a possible future employer?

In a 2010 study, 67% of employers said that they had used social networking sites to check out possible future employees, and 8% of companies have actually fired people based on something found on the internet. Whether you think it’s appropriate for companies to be searching the internet for information about you, they can do it, and that evidence will hold up in court. You don’t want to lose your job or lose a possible job opportunity because of something online.

It’s important that make sure we have thoroughly checked that our profiles are not accessible to the public. Facebook changes a lot, and the privacy settings do too. Unfortunately, the default setting when something is changed is to make part of your profile public, so you need to be aware of these changes. Go through the privacy settings thoroughly (click on all the buttons, make sure you know what every setting means).

Another, more difficult thing to be aware of is content posted by your friends. Not only are your friends a reflection of you, but everything they post on your wall or about you on their wall is visible to your friends, and much of it is visible to all their friends too.

What all of this boils down to is that trying to distill a person into a Facebook (or any other social networking site) profile is just not practical, and the result is a skewed representation of that person. In a normal relationship, you may know a person for awhile before revealing your political affiliations or religious beliefs, and with a client or employer, you may not reveal them at all. The internet creates a false sense of security- it’s all too easy to put personal information on the internet and not think about all the possible ramifications of doing so.

So, some recommendations. Dr. Joke suggested you make a clear distinction between personal and professional content. She even went so far as to unfriend all professional contacts. Thanks to Facebook lists, this may not be entirely necessary, but it’s certainly the safest route. I personally have a list on Facebook labeled “Professional” on which all my professional contacts are. They cannot see much of the content on my page, but I’m still able to contact them and vice-versa. I also chose to make a separate, private twitter account for my personal friends in addition to the one I have for MT contacts.

Next, exercise restraint. Think about what you’re posting. Does everyone really need to know or see what you’re about to post? Be selective with your friends. If you have a friend that likes to write crude things on your wall or rude comments on pictures, consider unfriending them or deleting any inappropriate content they associate you with.

Take care and happy networking!


President-Elect, SER-AMTAS

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Hey guys! Cassidy here writing to update you on the goings-on from today’s SER-AMTA Board of Directors meeting, particularly things we students will be interested in

One thing you may want to be aware of, especially if you will soon be moving from “student” status to “young professional”, is that there is money available to help you stay a member as you make this transition. As you may know, it costs quite a bit more to be a member of AMTA as a professional, so if you’re going to soon be a new professional, this may be something worth checking out.

Also, be aware that student membership is soon to see an increase, but professional membership will be decreasing. The changes will be slight, and although they may be annoying now as students, if you think about it, you’ll likely be a professional member much longer than you will be a student member, so it will save you money in the long run.

Finally, we are going to be offering one conference scholarship and one intern scholarship to two deserving applicants (one of which could be you!) for this year’s regional conference. Information to follow on how to apply.

I hope you’re enjoying conference if you’re here! Atlanta is quite beautiful right now. If you’re not here, keep up with us on this blog and we’ll let you know what’s going on that concerns us!

-Cassidy Smith

President-Elect, SER-AMTAS

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Conference is in swingggggg

Day one of National Conference is in full swing.  Michelle and I spent all morning in an SAAB (Student Affairs Advisory Board) meeting.  The SAAB Board consists of all the regional student presidents, their advisors, and the AMTAS executive board.  During the meeting, MANY great ideas were shared between the regions.  SER was very well represented and our current plans, conference, and communication structure were shared.  Curious about our current goings on?!?  Check out the new SATMARES!

SATMARES Fall 2011

That’s all for now, meeting with the SER Board of Directors in a couple hours, I’ll post again afterwards!

Matt Whitaker- SER-AMTAS President

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The spring SATMARES is here!!!


Check it out!

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Conference Classifieds

Looking for a roommate for regional conference in March? Need a ride? Check out the SER-AMTA classifieds! I’d love to see everyone there and hopefully this will help!

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That’s right guys, the Fall SER-AMTAS newsletter is out.  Simply click the link below to access and read the newsletter.  I strongly encourage you to do so as it is full of some great information as to recent events in the southeast.

Satmares 6.1


Matt Whitaker

President-elect, SER-AMTAS

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Rockin’ Out in Ohio!!!

Dear Music Therapy People:

The national ATMA conference is right around the corner! I’m interested in how many students from the South East Region are coming to conference. I will be reporting to the AMTAS Board of Directors, the Student Associations Advisory Board, and the SER-AMTA Board of Directors all of the awesome things our region has been up to. If you attended national conference, I would love to hear what you were up to at conference! Who was your favorite speaker? What was your favorite session? What did you absolutely love/not love? Would you like to see anything that was done at this conference at the regional conference in March? This is your chance to get your voice heard!

Love & Music,

Stefanie Maldonado, SER-AMTAS President

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Welcome welcome welcome!

Hey guys!

It’s my pleasure to welcome you to the new SER-AMTAS wordpress site.  This site will be a quick and fun way to communicate with other music therapy students around the southeast.  Check back here for information on events as well as activity spotlights from students around the southeast.  This site will also host an electronic edition of the SATMARES newsletter in November.  I hope each of you will find a way to utilize this resource and contribute.  Send me a message if you have an idea for a post!

I look forward to hearing from each of you!

Matt Whitaker

SER-AMTAS President elect

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