University of the Ozarks will examine the powerful therapeutic benefits of music and art in a program titled, “Healing Through the Arts,” on Thursday, April 11.
The program, which is part of the University’s Walton Arts & Ideas Series, begins at 7 p.m. in the Rogers Conference Center on campus. It is free and open to the public
“Healing Through the Arts” will feature Dr. Amanda Alders Pike (pictured, right), a 2005 U of O graduate and a board-certified art therapist from Florida, as well as Dr. Ellary Draper, assistant professor of music therapy at the University of Alabama.
Art and music therapy is practiced in various clinical and community settings, including hospitals, psychiatric and rehabilitation facilities, wellness centers, schools, crisis centers, forensic institutions, senior communities and private practice.
After graduating from Ozarks, Pike moved to Mexico to focus on her art, teach English and attend an art therapy program. The experience helped her become bilingual in English and Spanish. Later, she earned a master’s degree in New York and a Ph.D. from Florida State University. From there, she developed an eclectic professional background, encompassing education, counseling, business and marketing.
Pike established a private practice in South Florida as an art therapist which grew into a staffing company. She hired, trained, placed, and supervised art therapists in locations such as assisted living facilities, homeless shelters and eating disorder and substance abuse recovery treatment centers. In 2017, her company was purchased by a larger company. Pike currently works as in educational leadership and as a curriculum content manager with the American College of Education.
Draper holds degrees in music education from Westminster Choir College and music therapy from Florida State University. Her Ph.D. is in music and human learning from the University of Texas at Austin.
She previously worked as a music therapist with a variety of ages and populations outside of Houston. She also has experience as an elementary general music teacher. Her research interests are in the areas of children with disabilities, particularly in inclusive music classrooms.
Currently, she serves as the Chair of Special Education for the Alabama Music Educators Association and Chair of the Standards of Clinical Practice Committee for the American Music Therapy Association. A regular presenter at national and regional music therapy and music education conferences, her research is also published in the Journal of Music Therapy, Journal of Research in Music Education, Music Educators Journal, UPDATE: Applications of Research in Music Education, General Music Today, imagine, and Ala Breve.