We just got back from our national music therapy conference in Sandusky, Ohio. It was a whirlwind of a trip but such a wonderful experience for all of us! Rachel and I attended the conference this year with our current intern (Sammy) and our fabulous employee, Alisabeth. Between the four of us, we covered a lot of ground at the conference and manned a booth in the exhibit hall for 3 full days.
During the conference we attended educational sessions, went to meetings, spent hours in the exhibit hall, and meet with so many people! We take so much away from these conferences and want to encourage you to engage in professional development in whatever way makes sense to you. Here are the top reasons we attended conferences:
- Spending Time with Like-Minded Individuals – Nearly everyone at our conference was associated with music therapy in some way, shape, or form and had a general understanding of what we were doing on a daily basis. Meeting with people who were already on the same page allowed us to go deeper and gain new perspectives on what we are already doing.
- NEW IDEAS!!! – Though we were meeting with people who are all in the same field, we all do things a little differently and have different resources we find to be valuable. We all have our area of expertise and things that make us unique. In talking to other people or attending seminars, we gained so many new ideas and tips that we can implement right away or in the future.
- Self-Reflection – Getting new insight or talking to others allows me to feel validated or reflect on things that I want to change within myself. Every day of conference I felt like I needed to reflect on all of the amazing conversations we had throughout the day.
- Making New Contacts & Fostering Relationships – We met so many new people and made incredibly valuable contacts who we can look to in the future for ideas, new perspectives, and feedback. We also had the opportunity to spend time with people we have met previously, either in person or online, and build on those relationships.
I hope you can find ways to foster your own professionals development and learn something new every day!
Until next time,
Katey & Rachel