School of Music

Music Therapy Program


The Music Therapy Program of the School of Music offers both undergraduate and graduate options in music therapy.  Our program has been providing academic and practicum training for music therapists for over 30 years, and our students are employed around the world in hospitals, assisted living centers, clinics, schools, community treatment, and private practice.

Undergraduate Degree

The BM in Music, Concentration in Music Therapy, degree offers excellent job opportunities in a profession which combines the beauty and power of music, a desire to work with people with special needs, and a life of satisfaction and growth that comes from helping others through music.  The field of music therapy is a vibrant and growing profession–we hope you will be a part of it.

A six-month internship is required which follows coursework and four semesters of hands-on practicum experience with different populations (such as special education, gerontology, mental health, and medical care).  (Music Therapy Majors are welcome to participate in Graduation ceremonies prior to Internship; the degree will be conferred following Internship.)

Internships in Music Therapy

As a part of the BM in Music, Music Therapy degree program, students complete a clinical internship (MUSC 5997) after all other degree requirements have been fulfilled. Students are placed with Board Certified music therapists as internship supervisors by the Director of Music Therapy.  Recent clinical internships include:

Fulton County Public Schools, Atlanta, GA
The George Center, Atlanta, GA
The Center for Discovery, Harris, NY
MusicWorX, San Diego, CA
Eastern State Hospital, Williamsburg, VA
Hospice and Palliative Care, Winston-Salem, NC
CarePartners Hospice, Ashville, NC
J. Iverson Riddle Developmental Center, Morganton, NC
Rhythm and Rehab. LLC, Raleigh/Durham, NC
Allegro Music Therapy, Raleigh, NC
New Hanover Regional Medical Center, Wilmington, NC

For more information on internships, please contact Dr. Michelle Hairston, Director of Music Therapy at or 252.328-4281. 

Graduate Degrees

ECU offers the MM in Music Education, emphasis in Music Therapy, which combines graduate music education courses (on-line), graduate music courses, undergraduate music therapy courses, and a six-month internship. This is for the student with an interest in both music education and music therapy; it does not confer teacher licensure.

Graduate assistantships are available within the Music Therapy area, and are competitive.

Graduate Admission Requirements

A resume, a letter of intent, a portfolio of pre-professional activities, and an example of your creative and scholarly work are required for admission, along with the requirements for admission to the School of Music Graduate Program (please see the ECU Graduate Catalog). An Audition is not required for graduate music therapy applicants, but some students elect to audition in order to study their major instrument (an optional benefit in the degree program).

American Music Therapy Association

The ECU chapter of AMTAS (American Music Therapy Association for Students) is an active pre-professional group through which you may attend conferences, develop leadership through community service and advocacy, and enjoy getting to know life-long friends in your chosen area of study. Graduates are eligible to sit for the national certification exam administered by the Certification Board for Music Therapy.

Please contact us to schedule a phone conversation or visit in the near future.

For more information, contact:
Michelle Hairston
Chair of Music Education and Music Therapy Department
Music Education, Music Therapy