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Alumni Interview: Meridith Lager, #35

Meridith Lager, Intern #35

Interviewed by Brianna Larsen, Intern # 122

Meridith comes to us from Denver, Colorado.  She has her own private practice serving primarily older adults with Alzheimer’s and other dementias in nursing homes; assisted living and memory care units throughout the Denver area.  Meridith talks to us about the importance of personal growth in this latest interview.

1. What is your current job?

Currently, I’m the Owner/Director and MT-BC at Red Guitar Music Therapy, my private practice.

2. Would you say MusicWorx helped you get to where you are today?

Yes!

3. What drew you to the MusicWorx internship?

I heard about the caliber of the MusicWorx internship through the grapevine.  One of my practicum supervisors at Colorado State was also MusicWorx Alum! In addition, I loved the idea of living in beautiful San Diego.

4. What was your favorite moment of your internship experience?

I’ve been thinking about this one for a while and found it hard to pick just one moment, so here are a few:

  • Tossing a coin to pick which intern would “win” an acoustic guitar Barbara had lying around – I won, but needing only the case, I gave the guitar to a fellow intern. I still use the case for my classical guitar today!

  • Improvising on the cello with the lovely ladies at the breast cancer support group.

  • Relaxing the good folks at the integrated medicine center SO much through guided imagery, that one of the participants simply fell over – he was ok, just really, really relaxed!

  • Countless get-togethers at Barbara’s house, random lunches out and those special dinners when we celebrated as a team.

  • Facilitating drum circles (and figuring out how to carry all those drums)!

  • Our internship “graduation” party on the beach!

5. Are there any aspects of what you learned at MW internship that best prepared you for your career today?

Yes – how to start and maintain a business. This was something I didn’t learn through my regular, undergrad course work and I still use what Barbara taught me about running a business today. I think about this gift almost every day.

6. What was one of your biggest challenges during your internship?  

Breaking out of my shell – having confidence and going for it. Barbara is keenly aware that personal growth is just as important as say, musical skill, when becoming a successful therapist. She encouraged (and sometimes forced!) me to challenge myself on a regular basis. And I thank her for that!

7. What was your biggest “aha” moment for your professional and/or personal growth?

Ah, personal growth! Realizing that I had the guts to make “cold calls” to potential clients, develop programs, sign contracts, and form successful business relationships. I was scared to death by this and am grateful for the opportunity to practice these essential business skills while still under the safety of the “MusicWorx umbrella.”

8. What would be your one piece of advice to future MusicWorx interns?

Pick Barbara’s brain! Engage fully in your work, take chances and most importantly have fun.

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