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music therapy

what is music therapy?

Our board certified music therapist uses specific music techniques to help reach health and well-being goals. The music therapist will get to know you and your child to create a personalized music therapy plan and will work closely with your care team to create the best plan possible for your child.

Music therapy services are currently offered on our inpatient medical units and our inpatient behavioral health unit.

how can music therapy benefit my child?

  • Promote creativity
  • Express thoughts and feelings
  • Decrease stress and anxiety
  • Manage pain
  • Be active and get moving
  • Experience positive interactions
  • Cope with the various aspects of hospitalization

what happens in music therapy?

  • Singing
  • Playing instruments
  • Learning to play instruments
  • Songwriting
  • Music recording
  • Moving to music
  • Music relaxation

what our patient families are saying:

“The moment Lindsey came into the room with her guitar, Nate was in love. Now she brings other instruments for him to experience as well. Nate dances, laughs, and helps Lindsey play her guitar. It takes him away from the realization of being in the hospital.”

“He was restless and tossing and turning. Music therapy helped him to relax and fall asleep.” 

“She was dancing and singing when the doctor came in. She finally decided to give him a high five." 


Music therapy is healing to Henry 



Music therapy changes lives at Dayton Children's Hospital


contact music therapy

The music therapy team can be reached at 937-641-5673 or by email at

interested in a career in music therapy?

Board certified music therapists obtain a degree in music therapy from an accredited program, complete a 6-month (minimum 900 hour) internship from an approved program, and pass a national examination administered by the Certification Board for Music Therapists.

Music therapists work in various settings including hospitals, physical rehabilitation centers, nursing homes, mental health agencies, schools, substance abuse programs, forensic facilities, hospice programs, and adult day care facilities.

For more information, visit

  • American Music Therapy Association --
  • Certification Board for Music Therapists --

music therapy internship program

The music therapy internship is available to students that have completed the required undergraduate coursework at an AMTA-approved school and who have been cleared by their academic advisor to begin internship. The music therapy internship is offered annually starting in July.

The intern’s weekly schedule will model that of the supervising music therapist. An office space, musical instruments, iPad, and other technology will be available for the intern’s use. There will be a wide array of experiences but most sessions will be individual or family based. Observation of group sessions may occur on the behavioral health unit. The intern will have ample opportunities for observation of a music therapist and co-treatment with a music therapist before the intern becomes independent and assumes responsibility for a case load.

In addition to clinical work, the intern will be required to attend patient planning rounds, contribute to staff meetings, complete routine hospital education, document all patient encounters in the electronic medical record, and meet with the internship director on a weekly basis. There will be required readings and assignments related to clinical work. 

Dayton Children’s Hospital’s music therapy program is committed to providing a safe and encouraging environment for an intern’s growth and development. Because each intern has their own unique strengths and challenges, our style of training is learner-centered and resource-oriented. Our goal is to foster ethical, professional, and personal development while providing the best quality care for our patients and families. We support our interns through review of personal journals and written documentation as well as engagement in verbal processing, musical skill evaluation, and supervision.

entry-level competencies

The following competencies will be assessed through video recording as part of the interview process.

  1. Ability to sing in tune both a capella and while accompanying oneself on an instrument
  2. Ability to play piano/guitar in at least three keys
  3. Ability to play piano/guitar with varying accompaniment styles
  4. Ability to sight read simple musical selections

housing, meals and transportation

Dayton Children’s Hospital does not currently offer housing, meals or a stipend for interns. Interns have access to free onsite parking. Public transportation is available at the cost of the intern.

liability insurance

Liability insurance is not offered by Dayton Children’s Hospital. If the intern is not covered by the university’s liability insurance, the intern will be required to purchase liability insurance.

administrative requirements

Upon acceptance to the internship program, Dayton Children’s Hospital will work with the intern's university to establish an educational affiliate agreement. Prior to the intern’s start date (and at the cost of the intern), the intern must complete required health work and undergo fingerprinting with a criminal background check. Vaccination against COVID-19 is required. 

Click here to download the internship application.

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