Moving Along in my Research

At this time, my soon-to-be research paper looks like a mess of knowledge on paper! Luckily, my topic is so expansive that I could never stop finding more and more research- which is both a blessing and a curse!

I have finally been able to talk myself into stopping research for the time being to focus on organizing the information that I already have. I am going through every quote and source that I have taken down, and writing a brief summary so that I may then piece them together into my outline. My hope is that by organizing all of the information that I already have, I will be able to see the holes in my research, and fill them in!

My adorable and not-feeling-so-well cat, Rufus

These past few weeks I have had many distractions from working including health issues with my beloved cat Rufus, car problems, and a very busy month of my Americorps service. In order to keep myself on track, I have promised to work for at least one hour every day until our drafts are due on May 2nd. I have already put a lot of time into my research, so I definitely think this is doable!

In addition, I am still scheduling time to interview music educators, psychologists, neuro-biologist, students, or anyone who has been affected by music in their lives. If you fit this criteria and are interested in being interviewed for my Research Article and Applied Project (video), please e-mail me at or tweet me at @HelpinghandedT 



Unboxing Education- Why Interdisciplinary Studies in Education Matters

“Music, theatre, and dance have always been such an important part of my life, how can I give that up?” I thought, while brushing the dust from the floor of the Studio Theater off my costume. It was during the first day of technical rehearsal for PSU’s The Threepenny Opera that I really struggled with my educational path.

The cast of PSU’s The Threepenny Opera     Photo by JEM Photography

During my adolescence, music, theatre, and dance helped transform me from a shy and unconfident student, to a person proud to share who they really are with the world. Through the performing arts, I was able to learn how to express myself, gain self-confidence, trust, and become empowered, allowing me to be the person I am today. This passion that I found for the performing arts carried me all the way to college, starting as a Musical Theater major.

During my first year and a half, I started to feel as though the passion I once had was no longer there. I realized that the intense passion I had felt, wasn’t for performing itself, but for the incredible skills and empowerment I had found through the arts. At that moment, I knew that was what I wanted to do; I wanted to empower others through music, theatre, and dance, just as it had empowered me. Continue reading “Unboxing Education- Why Interdisciplinary Studies in Education Matters”

Empowering Youth Through Movement Workshop- Spring 2017

3.jpgThis weekend was the Empowering Youth Through Movement workshop, presented by Social Work professor David Lynch. This was the second semester that the class has put on a workshop for youth throughout our communities.

Empowering Youth Through Movement is a course that David and I, along with another Interdisciplinary Studies alumni Marina Phillips, created that emphasizes the connection between movement and empowerment. Through movement activities, social work/psychology lessons, and class discussions, we prepare our class members to understand how and why it can be useful to use movement with youth.

5.jpgAgain this year, the movement workshop achieved great success. The PSU Student facilitators led youth in activities that emphasized creative expression, trust, social skills, team work, emotional safety, and more. During the final session of the day, I led a workshop encouraging the group to work collaboratively and create a movement piece that represented their day at the workshop. This piece was shared with parents and guardians at the end of the day.
By the time it was ready to pack up and get going, all of the youth members were discussing how much fun they had, and how they cannot wait to come again next semester! It’s such a pleasure for me to see the success of this course. I’m proud to have passed the knowledge onto PSU Students, who will now continue to pass it on to youth all throughout their lives!

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