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New Music Therapy Program at Villa St. Joseph Offers Research, Internship Opportunities

The music therapy program at Duquesne University has been instrumental in helping to garner a $75,000 grant to create a music therapy program at Villa St. Joseph, a long-term residential care facility operated by the Sisters of St. Joseph in Baden, while simultaneously obtaining services for clients and providing research opportunities.

Through the collaborative efforts of Ray Niedenberger, director of development at Villa St. Joseph, and Sister Donna Marie Beck, director and chair of Duquesne’s music therapy program and a sister of St. Joseph, the Staunton Farm Foundation awarded the grant in July.

The grant will establish a music therapy program led by a certified music therapist consulting with Beck and eventually will incorporate the help of music therapist interns in conducting biweekly music therapy sessions. Brigette Sutton, a 2004 graduate of Duquesne’s music therapy program, will serve as director of the program, which will facilitate opportunities for student interns.

The new music therapy program will deliver quality services to many of the residents at Villa St. Joseph, according to Beck. The focus of the music therapy will be to increase social interaction and reduce symptoms of depression among the facility’s 120 residents.

Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. Duquesne, a campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, has been nationally recognized for its academic programs, community service and commitment to sustainability. Follow Duquesne University on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.