Sheridan College Offers Music Therapy

Michele Folster in college music room. (Photo by Pat Blair)
Michele Folster in college music room. (Photo by Pat Blair)

Registration is open now for a new course at Sheridan College this fall.

Michele Folster will teach Introduction to Music Therapy every Monday and Wednesday beginning Sept. 3. Folster is a board-certified music therapist, and a graduate of Sheridan College and Utah State University.

The Sheridan native said music therapy is the clinical use of music to work toward the specific needs of a person. She said the use of music as a treatment isn't new.

She said class topics will include the historical background of music therapy, professional music therapy organizations, clinical settings and those served by music therapy, education and certification requirements, the role of music and the music therapist in the therapy process, and strategies for treatment.

She added music therapists work with all age groups in a variety of situations, from helping hospitalized children and adults to people with developmental disabilities and those diagnosed with autism, dementia or Alzheimer's disease. Music has also been used to assist in childbirth. She added music therapists can be found in hospitals, clinics, schools and providing services in homes, assisted living and long-term care.

Dr. Christian Erickson is coordinator of music theory and technology at Sheridan College. He said the music therapy course is part of a group of rotating courses being developed by the college to allow students to explore a specialized area of music before they transfer to a four-year institution.

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