Master of Science in Sport Management off to a record start

UIndy MSSM students benefit from the faculty's positive relationships with the NCAA. Sometimes that even means having class at NCAA headquarters.

UIndy MSSM students benefit from the faculty’s positive relationships with the NCAA. Sometimes that even means having class at NCAA headquarters.

The new school year is off to a blockbuster start for the Master of Science in Sport Management (MSSM) program. The program, which is housed in the Department of Kinesiology, Health, and Sport Sciences, welcomed nearly two dozen new students this year – more than twice the size of any previous MSSM cohort.

Jennifer VanSickle, program director for both the undergraduate and graduate sport management programs, has some ideas for why the program is enjoying such a boost in enrollment.

“We made the master’s program more accessible,” she said, noting that applicants who posted at least a 3.0 GPA in their undergrad degree are no longer required to take the GRE. “The change in the admissions procedures puts us more in line with other sport management programs in the state.”

UIndy’s geography is also a draw for many students. The proximity to the NCAA headquarters and professional sports teams including the Pacers, Colts, and Indy Eleven –and the university’s working relationships with these organizations – is a plus for students seeking careers in the sports industry.

“We require two internships with a sports organization,” VanSickle said. “So our students gain valuable experience and have plenty of opportunities to network.”

Jessie Benner is in her second and final year of the sport management master’s program. Her internship experiences include a community relations internship with the WNBA franchise team, the Indiana Fever, and a championships and alliances ticketing experience at the NCAA.

“Both of my internship experiences have given me the opportunity to foster positive
relationships with those around me while expanding my network,” Benner said. “I am able to interact with and learn from leaders within the sports industry, at both the collegiate and professional levels. The hands-on experience of internships also allows me to strengthen my skills as look to enter the workforce in the near future.”

The internships, as well as class assignments, help MSSM students understand the rigorous nature of the world of sport management.

“A lot of people want to work in sports because it’s glamorous and they want to work in an
industry that matches their passions,” VanSickle said. “But the hours are long and most of the work is behind the scenes, so much that you might not actually get to see the ‘scenes.’ You have to work your way up before you can sit in the club suite and hobknob.”

Students don’t just have to take VanSickle’s word for it. Each MSSM student is paired with a sports industry mentor. Benner’s mentor is Kellie Leeman, senior director of ticket sales and service at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS).

“Kellie has experience in several areas of sport, including the NCAA and IMS,” Benner said.

“Since I’m still unsure about what career path I want to take, Kellie’s knowledge of different areas is very helpful. We meet once a month to discuss developments on my end; she has offered me great insights. I really value her opinion.”

Prior to working as a mentor, Leeman collaborated with VanSickle to collaborated to develop the NCAA externship program several years ago.

“I really enjoyed working with the UIndy students through that program,” said Leeman, who joined the staff at IMS in 2016. “The sport management mentor program was another great opportunity for me to work with UIndy students.”

Leeman offered this advice to sport management students, “Network and seek as many different types of experiences as you can so you can learn what you like and don’t like about the industry.”

VanSickle also emphasized that the responsibility for networking and taking advantage of all the MSSM program offers lies with the student.

“We set the table for them; they have to close the deal.”

Written by Amy Magan, communications manager for the Center for Aging & Community and the College of Health Sciences.

Roche Academy: Forging new career paths for chemistry and biology majors

Roche_Mobile500Getting the chance to meet the company CEO, or learning to take apart complicated instruments and putting them back together again, are experiences that go beyond the average summer internship. That’s just the tip of the iceberg for students participating in the Roche Academy, a new program for chemistry and biology majors at the University of Indianapolis.

The Roche Academy is a new partnership between Roche Diagnostics and the University of Indianapolis. Co-developed with Ascend Indiana, a Central Indiana Corporate Partnership (CICP) initiative, the Roche Academy will create a custom talent pipeline for biomedical equipment technicians.

With nearly 93,000 employees worldwide, Roche is the world’s leading biotech company with 17 biopharmaceuticals on the market, and was one of the first companies to bring targeted treatments to patients. Roche Diagnostics U.S. headquarters in Indianapolis is home to more than 4,500 employees.

Students accepted into the Roche Academy will complete a Roche-customized curriculum path and summer internship experience focused on the hands-on, life science and engineering skills necessary for employment at Roche. Students successfully completing the program will receive financial and educational incentives, including a job offer from Roche upon graduation.

William Durchholz ’20 (chemistry) is among the first students to participate in the Roche Academy. As an intern with Roche Support Network, he took part in professional development workshops and received valuable new science and computer skills. He called it “a fantastic experience.”

“I gained skills in working with computers, hardware, and software that I did not have before. I also got to put soft skills into practice in a real world setting. I learned a little bit about the business world that I had never been exposed to as a chemistry major,” Durchholz said.

David Styers-Barnett, chemistry chair, said Roche approached the University of Indianapolis with the opportunity. Faculty from chemistry, biology, engineering and physics worked with Roche to develop a curriculum.

“They really liked how we all got in the room together and worked on this as a group. They felt our infrastructure would work for their needs,” Styers-Barnett explained.

The program will be in full swing by 2019, and an August event on campus attracted dozens of students who toured Roche’s Navigator mobile lab, which features a virtual reality interactive display and examples of the instrumentation that Roche Academy students will learn to maintain.

“As Roche’s customer base continues to grow, the demand for quality and properly trained biomedical equipment technicians continues to increase. These technicians are critical to Roche’s operations, as they maintain critical lab equipment and provide customer service across Roche’s 32 geographic service regions,” said Jim Floberg, vice president of Roche Support Network, Roche Diagnostics Corporation.

The 2019 cohort will include ten students, growing to 25 by the third year of the program.

“It’s a clear career path. It definitely offers students a unique opportunity with a major biomedical corporation that not a lot of undergraduate science students would otherwise have,” Styers-Barnett added.

For Durchholz, the Roche Academy provided him access to industry mentors.

They helped me with the etiquette and find my way around. They became good friends who helped me succeed while at Roche. I know if I needed it, I could contact them and they would be more that happy to help me,” he explained.

That experience also reflected the one-on-one mentorship he received at the University of Indianapolis – something he says is integral to student success in the chemistry program.

“These relationships are why I have been successful and also why I was able to get this internship with Roche. UIndy has connections!” Durchholz said.

Learn more about the Roche Academy.

Written by Sara Galer, Senior Communications Manager, University of Indianapolis. Contact newsdesk@uindy.edu with your campus news.

School of Business Finance Lab brings Wall Street tech to students’ fingertips

Finance_Lab_Dedication500A new School of Business Finance Lab will bring students access to state-of-the-art technology to develop their skills as they learn about the world of finance. A dedication ceremony, which marked the start of 2018 Homecoming festivities, highlighted the lab’s twelve Bloomberg terminals and stock ticker – tools designed to give students hands-on experience and a competitive edge as they enter the workforce.

Students will be trained using Bloomberg Market Concepts software on Bloomberg terminals, the most widely used tool of its kind in the world. Those who complete the training program will receive certification in the software, which offers a wide array of data on businesses, analytics, financial variables, corporate governance and more. With twelve terminals, the Finance Lab provides the largest degree of higher education access to Bloomberg tools in central Indiana.

Dr. Larry Belcher, dean of the School of Business, describes the $300,000 lab facility as an experiential learning device to serve as a framework for curriculum-building. The focus on applied learning ties in closely with the school’s ethos.

“This is a major development for the School of Business. For students who want to go into finance and other disciplines, having exposure to professional-grade tools and the opportunity to be certified in their use is huge,” Belcher said.

The Finance Lab acts as a contemporary “front door” to the new home of the School of Business on the first floor of Esch Hall. In addition to the Bloomberg terminals, which provide access to the software, an electronic ticker displays financial data, including the stocks in a student-managed portfolio and major market indices and news.

The UIndy Student Fund is one example of the School of Business’ approach to hands-on learning. Students in the one-semester class manage about $100,000 in a brokerage account. Belcher explained that they learn to research companies and make investment recommendations based on their research. If approved by their instructor, the Schwab custodian will execute the trades. While the students don’t actually trade, Belcher said they do have a fiduciary responsibility.

“You are now legally in charge of somebody else’s money. There are professional and ethical responsibilities that go along with that. They will be held accountable for the decisions they make,” Belcher explained.

The facility and capacity offered by the Finance Lab will filter into a variety of areas in the School of Business curriculum, including a new graduate program in data analytics slated to begin in fall 2019. Belcher said there is also potential for interdisciplinary collaboration.

“Data management is a huge thing in health care. We’re looking at opportunities to utilize the capacity in cooperative ventures with other programs, primarily in the health professions,” Belcher said.

Through the Campaign for the University of Indianapolis, the generosity of more than 150 donors supported the creation of the Finance Lab. Major supporters included Stephen Fry, chair of the University Board of Trustees, who was instrumental in the project, along with Tom Martin; Joe and Kim Cathcart; John and Melissa Duffy; Jeff and Stacy Mitchell; Larry and Jane Keyler; and JP Morgan.

Interprofessional Education Week emphasizes benefits of multidisciplinary learning

SimulationExerciseCollaboration is key in today’s healthcare settings, and the inaugural Interprofessional Education Week at the University of Indianapolis will highlight the benefits of this approach for students, faculty, medical professionals and patients alike.

Taking place Oct. 1-5, 2018, with many events open to the public, Interprofessional Education (IPE) Week is the brainchild of organizers from the College of Health Sciences, the School of Nursing and the College of Applied Behavioral Sciences. Students will have the opportunity to participate in classroom and extracurricular activities to learn about trending topics in various healthcare fields.

While many interdisciplinary events are hosted each academic year, this marks the first time that organizers are bringing them together in a single week.

“Interprofessional practice and education are critical components of working in healthcare. It’s very rare that we as healthcare professionals work in a silo, where we don’t interact with anyone else,” said Alison Nichols, assistant professor of occupational therapy and IPE Week organizer.

IPE Week features a kick-off event Oct. 1, and panel discussions on topics including addiction, health disparities and ethics, which are all open to the public. Dr. Brenda Howard, an assistant professor of occupational therapy who serves on the Ethics Commission for the American Occupational Therapy Association, will speak about the importance of ethics and how that affects everyone, regardless of their profession.

Other events are aimed specifically at students in healthcare-related fields, including a home assessment, an emergency simulation and the Diabetes Escape Room.

Briyana Morrell, assistant professor of nursing and IPE Week organizer, said the goal is to encourage students to consider how they will address various patient needs alongside colleagues in other professions.

“We have found that some students do not even know what another profession is, what those professionals do, or settings in which they work,” Morrell explained. “These purposeful learning activities break down barriers and facilitate learning about quality healthcare while learning about each other.”

Nichols provided the example of an inpatient rehabilitation floor of a hospital, where a patient might come into contact with a physician, nurses, occupational and physical therapists, a social worker, pharmacists, speech language pathologists, and more. She said everyone on the patient’s team needs to work together – and IPE Week helps students recognize the benefits of collaboration.

“All of us engage in ethical behavior and decision-making; we all need to recognize the roles that each member of the team can play; we all need to be able to communicate effectively; and we all have to be able to collaborate in order to give the patient the best client-centered care possible,” Nichols explained.

The interprofessional perspective pays dividends for faculty as well as student success. Emergency simulations held in 2016 and 2017 have served as the basis for several scholarly pursuits for UIndy faculty, and dozens of faculty have presented posters or talks on IPE at regional, national and international conferences.

“Many of the faculty who are organizing this event also have an article in press, another under review, and a final one near submission. What’s more, these events have helped faculty learn about each others’ professions, programs, students, and work,” Morrell said.

Morrell encouraged the entire campus community to be part of the inaugural IPE Week.

“Even if you think you know a lot about healthcare, you may find you don’t know as much as you think and have room to learn and grow.  It will benefit you, your profession, other students, and your patients,” she said.

The Interprofessional Education Week planning committee would like to thank the following sponsors: Lambda Epsilon Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International Nursing Honor Society, the University of Indianapolis Center for Aging & Community, the Central Indiana Oncology Nursing Society and Community Health Network. Additional thanks to Zoll for cardiac resuscitative equipment.

Schedule of events (contact Alison Nichols with questions.)

Monday, Sept. 17

Event Location Time Audience
Diane Healey Geriatrician Lecture R.B. Annis Theatre, Health Pavilion 4 p.m. Public. L/P credit available.

Monday, Oct. 1

Event Location Time Audience
Panel discussion: Addictions R.B. Annis Theatre, Health Pavilion 9-11 a.m. Public
Kickoff event: Conceptions and Misconceptions: What do you Know about the Many Healthcare Professions? R.B. Annis Theatre, Health Pavilion noon-1 p.m. All healthcare students
Mock trial R.B. Annis Theatre, Health Pavilion 2-4 p.m. Public
Ask ProEdge: Resume and Career Coaching Health Pavilion atrium 9-11 a.m.
1-3 p.m.
All students

Tuesday, Oct. 2

Event Location Time Audience
Home assessment CLC apartment 8:30-11 a.m. Invitation only
Emergency simulation Health Pavilion and Nicoson Hall gym Noon-3 p.m. Invitation only for nursing and athletic training students
Virtual Dementia Tour CAC Apartment Round 1: 5-6:30pm

Round 2: 6:30-8pm

Public

RSVP to adriank@uindy.edu

Wednesday, Oct. 3

Event Location Time Audience
Home assessment CLC apartment 8:30-11 a.m. Invitation only
Panel discussion: Solving Ethical Problems Interprofessionally R.B. Annis Theatre, Health Pavilion 10-11:30 a.m. Public
Panel discussion: Interprofessional Practice: A Case Study with Community Health Network R.B. Annis Theatre, Health Pavilion 5:30-6:30 p.m. Public
Diabetes Escape Room Simulation Space, Health Pavilion 1-3 pm Invitation only
IPE Ask the Recruiter (with ProEdge) R.B. Annis Theatre, Health Pavilion 3-4:30 p.m. All students

Thursday, Oct. 4

Event Location Time Audience
Home assessment CLC apartment 8:30-11 a.m. Invitation only
Emergency simulation Health Pavilion 8-11 a.m.
12-3 p.m.
Invitation only for nursing and athletic training students
Panel discussion: Addictions R.B. Annis Theatre, Health Pavilion 6-8 p.m. Public
Women in Leadership: Strategies and Successes (LP credit) UIndy Hall B 6-8 p.m. Public

(note related to sport industry)

Friday, Oct. 5

Event Location Time Audience
Panel discussion: Health Disparities R.B. Annis Theatre, Health Pavilion 9-10 a.m. Public
Diabetes Escape Room Simulation Space, Health Pavilion 1-3 pm Invitation only
Breaking Down Stereotypes with OT and PT Across Campus; HEAL 208 12-1pm Current OT and PT students only

 

University of Indianapolis hosts Inaugural Chief Diversity Officers Symposium

The University of Indianapolis will host the Inaugural Chief Diversity Officers Symposium Sept. 11-13, 2018. The event is organized by CoopLew, a collaboration of national diversity researchers, experts and former chief diversity officers focused on developing transformative diversity leadership.

University of Indianapolis Officer of Inclusion and Equity Sean Huddleston explained that the decision to host the symposium aligns with the goal of positioning the University as a recognized diversity, equity and inclusion leader.

“We believe that by serving as a convener and major contributor for these types of conversations and events, UIndy can help organizations and institutions connect to research theory and practices centered on advancing innovative strategies for leveraging their diversity,” Huddleston said.

Around 20 chief diversity officers from higher education institutions across the country will be immersed in strategic approaches to finance, budgeting and strategic diversity fundraising.

“More and more, this is becoming an area of responsibility and focus for higher education chief diversity officers to help bolster their efforts while mitigating budget and funding limitations,” explained Huddleston. “However, there hasn’t been a great deal of training emphasis offered on fundraising for CDOs to match the increasing demand for these skills. This symposium will offer a particular focus on developing fundraising skills and strategies.”

CoopLew approached Huddleston earlier this year at the National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education conference about the possibility of hosting their 2nd annual CDO Bootcamp for new higher education chief diversity officers in February 2019.

“We agreed to host the bootcamp, but recognized an additional opportunity to host their inaugural CDO symposium as well. We discovered lots of mutual benefit and decided to move forward with hosting both events,” Huddleston said.

Huddleston expects the number of symposium participants to grow in future years, and is looking into the University hosting the event annually.

University of Indianapolis Beyond Borders Team installing water stations in Texas borderlands

waterstation600BROOKS COUNTY, Texas – The University of Indianapolis Beyond Borders Team continues its humanitarian and scientific mission this month with the installation of water stations in South Texas. Led by Krista Latham, director of the University of Indianapolis Human Identification Center and associate professor of biology and anthropology, the team continued its collaboration with the South Texas Human Rights Center with the goal of preventing migrant deaths by installing the water stations.

Latham’s research and field work has brought national attention to the humanitarian crisis happening at the border. Since 2013, Latham and her graduate students on the Beyond Borders Team have been working with other organizations and universities to uncover remains from unmarked grave sites and identify the bodies of those who have died while making the journey to the United States.

Latham explained that the water stations are an important extension of the project’s ongoing work in South Texas.

Follow the Beyond Borders blog.

“Our work would not be necessary if there were not so many deaths in the desert due to overheating and dehydration.  This could partly be prevented by providing life-saving water. I believe our humanitarian aid contributions to this crisis are expressed in many different ways,” she said.

The group’s current trip to Brooks County involved the team successfully raising $750 to cover the cost of supplies for ten water stations. The students will prepare and set up the water stations at various locations throughout the county, which covers 944 square miles of brush land and desert.

“It is our hope that the donation and our work in setting up the new water stations will save countless lives,” Latham said.

The Beyond Borders Team will also participate in searches for the remains of those who died while crossing the border. If remains are located, Latham’s group will assist in recovering the remains so they can be identified and repatriated home.

As forensic specialists we volunteer a very specific skill set that contributes to the identification and repatriation of the unidentified migrants in the Texas Borderlands, but on a broader scale we are working to promote basic human rights. We are treating these individuals with dignity in death as we work towards giving them a name and a memory,” Latham said.

waterstation2For the students on the Beyond Borders Team, the trip is an opportunity to participate in a real world application of scholarly knowledge, skills and humanitarianism.  

“This opportunity represents hands-on training in the practice of global citizenship by empowering the students to utilize their education in a way that operates to promote a sense of common humanity and social responsibility. Promoting human rights and working for social justice in this unique situation will provide UIndy students the opportunity to grow professionally and personally,” Latham said.

Angela Zimmer, who is pursuing a master’s degree in human biology, is a team rookie on the trip.

“We are so proud of all we were able to achieve, but the reason for our work here has not been lost on us. The water stations we built today may save lives. The searches we conduct may help bring loved ones back to their families. Did we put in a lot of work today? Absolutely, but our work here is not finished. We’ve reached one goal but we’re only just getting started,” she said.

Follow the Beyond Borders blog.

 

Graduate Real Estate Development students present inaugural capstones

From left to right: Mike Patarino, instructor and advisory board member, Justin Williams, Anne McKinley, Logan Brougher, and Eric Harvey, program director.

From left to right: Mike Patarino, instructor and advisory board member, Justin Williams, Anne McKinley, Logan Brougher, and Eric Harvey, program director.

The first cohort of students in the Master of Professional Studies in Real Estate Development program presented their capstone projects in April, just a week after students in the program won the NAIOP Urban Land Institute University Challenge for the second consecutive year.

Anne McKinley, Logan Brougher and Justin Williams showcased the final efforts of their degree in front of peers, family, and industry professionals. Each was tasked with selecting one of four options for their project:

    • A real estate development project proposal
    • Solving a critical problem with an industry partner
    • Creating a white paper that contributes to industry practice
    • A 7.5-week field experience

“This is an opportunity to showcase the skills they’ve learned and built upon in each course. It’s a culmination of their experience and backgrounds and what they want to do in the future,” said Eric Harvey, program director. “It’s an opportunity to propel them in the career of their choosing.”

Each of the students’ presentations showcased a different opportunity to innovate real estate development in the state of Indiana. For Justin Williams and Anne McKinley, that meant creating real development proposals from the ground up. Williams focused on tax credit-eligible low-income housing in the city square of Lebanon, Indiana. “Lebanon Lux” would support the influx of labor projected to join the city by 2022.

McKinley proposed Oak Ridge Springs, an amenity-rich neighborhood in the fast growing city of Westfield in Hamilton County. McKinley didn’t have to look far for inspiration when envisioning Oak Ridge Springs.

“I was really developing a neighborhood for myself,” McKinley says. “Driving around Carmel, I didn’t really find anything that fit my needs. Then I stumbled across this plot of land and the deal was made for me.”

The site plan for McKinley’s Oak Ridge Springs

The site plan for McKinley’s Oak Ridge Springs

During his first year in the program, Logan Brougher found an internship at Greenstreet Ltd., an Indianapolis-based real estate development firm. He has since progressed to full-time associate, and presented his project experience with Fort Wayne Electric Works, a reimagining of the General Electric campus in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The project, a joint venture with Greenstreet and Cross Street Partners, will transform the abandoned 39-acre space into a mixed-use district of “innovation, culture and community.”

Jeff Kingsbury, managing principal of Greenstreet Ltd., spoke highly of what the MPS has done for Logan.

“As [Logan] progressed in the program, he was able to immediately bring his learning from the classroom into the office,” Kingsbury said. “It was great for us an employer, and I think it was good for the program to have engaged working professionals in the classroom.”

Harvey reflected on the growth he has seen in the first cohort of graduates.

“They are brilliant people—that’s obvious. They’ve picked up technical real estate knowledge and are running with it. That was evident in their presentations, because if you ask any of the board members here, they would say these are real life projects that could be completed today. And that’s the goal of the program.”

Applications are currently being accepted for the fall 2018 Real Estate Development cohort. Eric Harvey can be reached at harveye@uindy.edu. Apply here.

Written by Logan McGrady, Communications Specialist for Graduate and Adult Learning Enrollment.

University of Indianapolis meets growing national need with Addictions Counseling masters and certificate programs

Featured speakers at the press conference included (from left) President Robert L. Manuel; Paul Babcock, Director of Indianapolis Office of Public Health and Safety; Rachel Halleck, Senior Director of Behavioral Health Services at Volunteers of America; State Senator James Merritt; Anita Thomas, Dean of the College of Applied Behavioral Sciences, and Norma Hall, dean of the School of Nursing. Photo:  D. Todd Moore.

Featured speakers at the press conference included (from left) President Robert L. Manuel; Paul Babcock, Director of Indianapolis Office of Public Health and Safety; Rachel Halleck, Senior Director of Behavioral Health Services at Volunteers of America; State Senator James Merritt; Anita Thomas, Dean of the College of Applied Behavioral Sciences, and Norma Hall, dean of the School of Nursing. Photo: D. Todd Moore.

INDIANAPOLIS – The University of Indianapolis is supporting the nationwide fight against addiction with the introduction of two new graduate programs in Addictions Counseling.

The Master of Arts in Addictions Counseling and the Interprofessional Certificate in Addictions fill a growing need locally and nationally to combat the addiction crisis. According to data from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, abuse of tobacco, alcohol, and illicit drugs adds up to more than $740 billion annually in costs related to crime, lost work productivity and healthcare.*

“The University of Indianapolis recognizes the urgent need to address addiction and the toll it takes on communities in Indiana and throughout the nation. These programs offer students the opportunity to develop the professional skills necessary to reverse the effects of addictions and to help patients lead healthy, fulfilling lives,” said University of Indianapolis President Rob L. Manuel.

The Master of Arts in Addictions Counseling at the University of Indianapolis provides an interdisciplinary focus that blends psychology, social work, and counseling into a complete behavioral healthcare curriculum. The Interprofessional Certificate in Addictions provides unique training in addictions and highlights a holistic approach that emphasizes interprofessionalism.

“Medical providers have the opportunity to learn about counseling, and social workers and counselors can learn about medical and drug management. The curriculum is designed to help all students view their work with patients holistically,” said Norma Hall, School of Nursing dean.

“The curriculum for the certificate was built following research from the National Institute on Drug Abuse which shows greater improvement when health and behavioral health approaches are combined with employment and family components,” said Anita Thomas, College of Applied Behavioral Sciences dean.

The University of Indianapolis Master of Arts in Addictions Counseling will prepare individuals interested in working with clients diagnosed with substance abuse. No specific prerequisites are needed, and graduates become eligible for an addictions counselor license.

Learn more about the program.

*NIDA Trends & Statistics, 2018

About the University of Indianapolis

The University of Indianapolis, founded in 1902, is a private, liberal arts university located just a few minutes from downtown Indianapolis. UIndy is ranked among the top Midwest Universities by the U.S. News and World Report, with a diverse enrollment of more than 5,500 undergraduates, 1,300 graduate students and 400 continuing education students. The University offers a wide variety of study areas, including 100 undergraduate degrees, more than 35 master’s degree programs and five doctoral programs. With strong programs in the health sciences, engineering, business and education, UIndy impacts its community by living its motto, “Education for Service.” www.uindy.edu.

 

Music therapy program forges community connections through hands-on learning

Student Tori Zimmerman dances during a therapy session. Prof. Jan Schreibman is on the right. At Still Waters Adult Day Care facility in Indianapolis.

Student Tori Zimmerman dances during a therapy session at Still Waters Adult Day Center in Indianapolis. Prof. Jan Schreibman is on the right.

From preschoolers to senior adults, the field of music therapy offers an increasing number of opportunities to help patients achieve goals. A new music therapy program at the University of Indianapolis provides students with hands-on opportunities to apply innovative techniques, grow their skill sets and connect with the community all at the same time.

“It’s amazing to see how we can all be brought together by music,” said Connor Furgason ’20 (music therapy), who has worked with children at the University Heights Children’s Center preschool.

Furgason is part of the University’s first cohort in the music therapy degree program. Graduates in the program will earn a Bachelor of Science in music therapy. Janice Schreibman, assistant professor in the Department of Music, developed the program and serves as director.

Music therapists use techniques such as composition, improvisation, performing and listening to achieve non-musical goals that include the patient’s physical, emotional, cognitive and social well-being. The use of music to enhance developmental care in the NICU supports premature infant weight gain and develops mother-infant bonding.

Music therapists also work with children on the autism spectrum to improve social and communication skills; people who have mental health disorders or drug addictions to develop coping skills and improve overall quality of health; individuals with traumatic brain injury or neurological disorders to promote functional use of voice, mobility, and use of upper extremities; veterans or others who have experienced traumatic events to help reduce stress and anxiety; and older adults diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease to improve reminiscence and support self-expression.

Individuals who possess a Bachelor of Science in music degree may qualify to pursue a equivalency certificate in music therapy by completing all music therapy courses and the capstone of an internship. Students receiving either a degree or certificate must pass a Board Certification exam offered by CBMT before they can practice.

Learn more about the program here.

Schreibman said one of the unique aspects of the University of Indianapolis’ music therapy program is the perspective she brings from her extensive clinical experience. She founded Creative Pathways, a nonprofit that focuses on “Sibshops®” (workshops designed for siblings of children with special needs) and providing music therapy at adult day centers. Individual music therapy is also provided in a limited capacity. Hands-on experiences are an important aspect of services.

“I emphasize applying skills immediately while you’re learning them and not waiting,” Schreibman explained.

Still Waters Adult Care Center in Indianapolis (photos by Todd Moore)

Still Waters Adult Care Center in Indianapolis (photos by Todd Moore)

Music therapy students are paired with community partners as part of the program’s emphasis on practical experiences, including Accessibilities Inc. in Greenwood, Noble of Indiana , Opportunities for Positive Growth, Meaningful Day Services, Still Waters Adult Day Center in Indianapolis and Riley Hospital for Children at Indiana University Health.

“Just in my first semester of the program, I was out in the field once a week at two different places working alongside my colleagues,” said Morgan Knight ’19, a 2017 music graduate who is enrolled in the music therapy equivalency program.

Gabriella Ratliff  ’16 (music), who is pursuing a music therapy equivalency degree, plans to use her love of music to work with children facing physical, social or developmental challenges.

“Professor Schreibman is great and willing to work with you to figure out the best path for you to achieve your goals of becoming a music therapist,” Ratliff said.

Music therapists must be proficient in guitar, piano and voice, and candidates for the program are required to have those working skills. However, Schreibman emphasized that clients do not need to have any musical skills to benefit from music therapy.

“The idea for the person receiving services is that they are active in the treatment. It’s not about being perfect in making music when you’re receiving music therapy. It’s all about the process and the relationship that’s built,” Schreibman said.

Growing field
Schreibman noted that there are currently not enough practicing music therapists to meet the need of all of those waiting for services. More hospitals are investing in music therapy services, including Riley Hospital for Children and Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital. School districts are also beginning to see the advantages of music therapy, particularly in support of the developmental disability population.

Furgason noted the advantages of the University’s location, which is close to hospitals and other large employers.

“With the ability to be in a community that encourages development in music, and to be so close to Indianapolis, the opportunities are going to be endless,” Furgason said.

Written by Sara Galer, Senior Communications Specialist, University of Indianapolis. Contact newsdesk@uindy.edu with your campus news.

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