Dayna Koehn, Intern #76
Interviewed by Kristen McSorley
Current Intern #124
The latest MusicWorx Alumni interview is with Dayna Koehn, Intern #76. Dayna notes that an “aha” moment during internship was realizing that she had control over how much time she spends on her work. This realization now allows her to successfully balance contracting music therapy services, owning a business and mothering two children. She credits the MusicWorx internship for stretching her outside of her comfort zone and into new things that challenged her and led to significant personal growth. She encourages current and future interns to also allow themselves to be transformed by stepping outside of their comfort zones!
Enjoy Dayna’s answers to our interview questions below:
1. What is your current job?
Music Therapist + business owner
2. Would you say MusicWorx helped you get to where you are today?
I would not be confidently pursuing and succeeding at my own business endeavors had I not completed the MusicWorx internship. The internship experience helped me define what kind of business I wanted to run as well as be realistic about career goals when balanced with family in both the short and long term.
3. What drew you to the MusicWorx internship?
Of all of the internships that I looked into and applied for, the MusicWorx internship application was by far the most extensive and challenging to complete. I hoped that it reflected the extent to which it would challenge me to grow as a music therapist outside of what I was ‘comfortable’ doing, as well as give me experience with populations I had yet to be exposed to during my collegiate work. Of course, the internship experience accomplished this expectation and then some.
4. What was your favorite moment of your MusicWorx experience?
There were so many great moments, but what I appreciate most from the experience are the relationships, both personal and professional, that have been fostered by having the opportunity to be involved with MusicWorx!
5. What aspects of what you learned at the MusicWorx internship prepared you for your career today?
Loads of stuff … from personal growth to logistically how to manage a business. The internship stretched me beyond my comfort zone and basically eliminated the idea of boundaries that I had set for myself in my professional and personal development. It broadened my horizons, so to speak.
6. What was one of your biggest challenges during your internship?
Finding balance between internship demands, my family, and realizing that I will need to continually find that balance moving forward beyond internship … creating a career for myself that accommodates both of my career goals as well as maintaining a healthy family lifestyle — both are important to me.
7. What was your biggest “aha” moment for your professional and/or personal growth?
My ‘aha’ moment was giving myself permission to have it all … just not all at once. Realizing that I had control of what I wanted to do with my life, and that was all that really mattered. The internship, and the lovely Barbara, required and expected a lot from each of us. It’s a good thing. I also realized that I could work as hard as I wanted to but also be okay with doing more or less. I knew that I would never be able to sustain the level of work I did during the internship and raise a family the way I wanted to. I could have more contract hours and have grown my businesses faster than I have in the past three years with the skills and tools that MusicWorx has given me; however, I also know I wouldn’t be succeeding as a mother and wife the way I am. When my children are in school full time in a few years, I will have more time for my career at that point and be able to focus on faster growth.
Since my internship, I am raising two children, have established a second business and am contracting ~ 15-20 hours of music therapy services at several facilities. Balance is key. During the internship, it’s all work and growth – focusing on career and personal growth. Now, it is balancing family, career and growth.
8. What would be your one piece of advice to future MusicWorx interns?
Be prepared and willing to stretch yourself beyond what your current boundaries are in regards to putting yourself out there … creatively and intellectually. Don’t be afraid to try something and fail. It’s how you will learn.