Music, Medicine, and Mentorship

New SCP board member and Education Committee Chair Dr. Frank Clark blogs about expanding the orchestra’s educational programs.

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The students sat in rapt attention, waiting for Mr. Jones to teach them the next drumming rhythm. Exciting children about music is a core part of the SCP’s mission: “The [SCP] entertains, educates, enriches, and excites diverse audiences throughout the Midlands and beyond.”

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Dr. Frank Clark

To sustain this mission, we must continue to develop new initiatives that will have a lasting impact on the community at large. One way to accomplish this is expanding the established framework of educational programs like Adopt-a-Musician and Carnival of the Animals. Programs like these and others allow our musicians to form collaborative relationships with students in various communities, facilitating mentorship and an appreciation for the arts. Effective mentorship is one seed that can be planted in the minds and hearts of our youth. These students possess a sense of curiosity and eagerness to learn. There is nothing more gratifying than empowering youth to reach their full potential.

The SCP Education Committee is excited about a new initiative to implement the Adopt-a Musician program in health care settings. One of my goals as committee chair has been to develop a program that will expand upon our organization‘s knowledge and understanding regarding the impact music has as a healing tool for the mind and the body. I was recently awarded the American Psychiatric Association SAMSHA Minority Fellowship Grant. A portion of these funds will be used to enrich resident education and improve physician well being through music.  I’m also interested in how music affects patient outcomes in mental health facilities. As a psychiatrist I recognize that as a provider one must take a holistic approach to the treatment of mental illness and the maintenance of mental health. Additionally, health care providers must be equipped with the proper tools to “heal thyself” in order to withstand the storms of life.

Music is a priceless form of medicine that can positively impact the physician-patient relationship.  It is one form of therapy that entertains, educates, enriches, and excites a community. We look forward to an exciting and transformative 50th season.

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One Response to Music, Medicine, and Mentorship

  1. Kim Gipson says:

    Dr. Clark,

    I could not agree with you more that music is a priceless form of medicine. I truly believe in its healing capabilities of the mind and soul. Partnering with the SCP is a fresh idea and one that is sure to succeed. Continue your dedication to this project.

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