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Conference Schedule

The day will run from 10:00am - 6:15pm ET, which includes seven (7) session times, a 30-minute lunch break,
and five (5) 15-minute breaks between sessions.  Full session details are below.

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You’ve heard the saying “You get out of it what you put into it.” The same applies to mentoring! In this interactive session, we will brainstorm ways to get to know your mentor/mentee, build a personal and professional relationship, establish preferred and regular communication goals, and provide instructional support. Attendees will learn to use cognitive coaching and problem-solving techniques to help new teachers find solutions to challenging situations, both in and outside the music classroom.

Dr. Baumgartner is Associate Professor of Music Education at the University of Oklahoma where he teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in music education, supervises music student teachers and graduate research, and directs the New Horizons Band. He is founder of the OkMEA Mentorship Program, through which he co-facilitates a Beginning Teacher Workshop and 1-to-1 mentoring program. His research interests include music student teaching, instrumental music methods and rehearsal techniques, community music, and music teacher mentoring.

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The purpose of this session will be to identify and discuss how to effectively overcome common challenges encountered by music education majors. Topics to be explored may include scheduling, goal-setting, musicianship, professionalism, and networking. Presentation and discussion of select topics will be framed with the following in mind: how to achieve a successful experience as a music education major while preparing to effectively transition into the roles of preservice teacher and music practitioner.

Dr. Jacqueline Henninger is Associate Director for Teaching and Learning and Associate Professor of Music Education in the School of Music at Texas Tech University. Prior to joining the faculty at Texas Tech, she was a Fulbright Scholar in Sub-Saharan Africa. Her research is focused on teacher preparation and diversity, equity, inclusion, and access in the music classroom, has been presented at state, national, and international conferences, and has been published in several academic journals.

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Practical strategies and real world examples of transitioning from being a student teacher to a teacher will be presented in this session. Tips for finding and utilizing a mentor will be given. Discussion of common fears along with a question and answer period will help ease anxiety commonly felt by new teachers.

Amanda Christina Soto is an Associate Professor of Music Education at Texas State University, where she teaches undergraduate and graduate music education courses and serves as the Chair for Music Education and Student Teacher coordinator. She has undertaken certification studies in Orff and Kodály pedagogical approaches and holds a certification in world music pedagogy from the Smithsonian Institution. She is currently co-instructor for the annual Smithsonian Folkways Certificate Course in World Music Pedagogy.

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Everyone says the first year is difficult, but what should we do about it? In this session, we will discuss strategies that set you up for success, relieving some of those first-year woes and allowing you to focus on what’s important.

Ajori B. Spencer is the Pre-K-12 Performing Arts Specialist for Pinellas County Schools, overseeing music, theatre, and dance programs. Prior to that role, he was Director of Bands at Madeira Beach Fundamental and Pinellas Park Middle School. Ensembles under Mr. Spencer’s leadership have been cited for great attention to detail and musicality, performing at events like the 20th Southeastern United States Middle School Band Clinic. Mr. Spencer remains active as a guest conductor and clinician.

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Young professionals are asked to juggle more than just teaching, and their personal finances usually suffer from lack of attention. This session will provide tools and tips to help you more easily manage your personal finances, find achievable ways to plan for the future, and answer general questions you may have.

Richard graduated from the University of Alabama and received his Master of Arts in Arts Administration from Florida State University and MBA from Mississippi State University. His career path has four years as a high school music teacher, two years in management of a performing arts center and nine years managing multiple not-for-profit organizations as an association management professional. Richard is a Certified Association Executive and has a certificate in diversity and inclusion in the workplace. He currently serves as the Chief Financial Officer for The Findlay-Hancock County Community Foundation.

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Harness the power of partnership! Strong relationships between teaching artists, music educators, and other school personnel help to improve the school environment. In this workshop, learn to identify, articulate, and demonstrate the ability of the arts to increase vocabulary, critical thinking skills, social emotional awareness, and help students make personal connections and real-world application. Participants will walk away with strategies for collaborating and tips for using the arts as an academic driver.

International singer, playwright, CEO of Winceyco and Executive Director of NanaBabies Nonprofit, Wincey’s innovative programs won her Kiss FM’s “Phenomenal Woman” award, Zeta Phi Beta woman of the year, and Women In Media civil rights activist award. An author, producer of educational and inspirational CDs, Arts Co-Chair of the NJ Coalition Against Human Trafficking, and creator of Traffick Jam, arts events that raise awareness, Wincey is a national master teaching artist and certified life coach.

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This session will focus on the identity needs of undergraduate music education students, who research suggests have a dual identity as both a musician and teacher. We will explore how to "feed" both sides through experiences and engagement with mentors. Identity stressors and signs that point to issues of “fit” with the music education profession will be discussed.


David A. Rickels is Associate Professor and Chair of Music Education at the University of Colorado Boulder. His teaching background includes settings from kindergarten through college, including high school concert and marching bands, beginning band and general music, and college music education courses. Dr. Rickels is the current national Chair of the Society for Music Teacher Education (SMTE), and also serves on the editorial board of the Bulletin of the Council for Research in Music Education.

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Overview of Certification process for the State of Maryland.

April Wade has been navigating the Maryland certification process for 15 years. She currently serves an Education Program Specialist with Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE). Prior to joining MSDE, she worked in Baltimore City Public School System and Baltimore County Public Schools Human Resource departments. She is currently the principle advisor and auditor for local school systems in Maryland's central school district and assigned MSDE Specialist for Maryland Approved Program graduates in central Maryland.

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Spilling valve oil on your clothes! The angry parent email! The copy machine is out of paper!! There are so many non-musical events that will happen your first year of teaching music that can make or break the exciting energy you came with the first day of school. This session will be filled with the tips and tricks needed to conquer the first year of teaching!

Anthony Beatrice is the Executive Director for the Arts of the Boston Public Schools and President-Elect of the Massachusetts Music Educators Association. He received both his undergraduate and graduate degrees in Music Education from the University of Massachusetts at Lowell.

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Being a music educator goes well beyond teaching pitches and rhythms. Through our comportment, we must model our principals, standards, ethics, and comportment for students and communities. Together, we will discuss the importance and implementation of integrity, respect, fairness, accountability, commitment, and responsibilities as they directly relate to you, the music educator.

Deborah Confredo is Professor of Music Education at Temple University. She is in demand as guest conductor, clinician, adjudicator, and lecturer. Her publications include The Complete Woodwind Instructor (Barnhouse), Lessons in Performance (FJH), and the Measures of Success® band method (FJH). Tau Beta Sigma, Illinois Music Educators Association, Pennsylvania Music Educators Association, Mansfield University (PA), Pennsylvania State University, Florida State University, and Temple University have honored her for service to music education.

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Join Dr. Mackie V. Spradley, NAfME President, and Dr. Brian K. Schneckenburger, MMEA President, to explore the symbiotic relationship between a professional and their association. What benefits, opportunities, responsibilities, and rights do members have? What does the Association need from the members in order to thrive? What does your Association do for you? Join us as we answer these questions.

Dr. Mackie V. Spradley is the President of the National Association for Music Education and the Director of Curriculum Programs at the Texas Education Agency (Austin, TX.). Mackie received the B.M. in Voice from the University of North Texas (UNT), the M.A. in Vocal Pedagogy from Texas Woman’s University, and the Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction with a minor in Anthropology from UNT. Mackie’s work centers on equity, critical discourse analysis, and culturally responsive teaching.

Dr. Brian K. Schneckenburger is Supervisor of Music and Dance for Baltimore County Public Schools. He currently serves as President of the Maryland Music Educators Association and as a Steering Committee member for the Teaching with Primary Sources project for the National Association for Music Education. Brian also teaches adjunct in the music education department at Towson University. He received his Ph.D. in Curriculum & Instruction/Music Education from the University of Maryland, College Park.

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