Department of Music
Phone: (509) 527-2561

01/30/14 10:16 am Age: 2 yrs

Music and Memories


By: Holley Bryant

Social Work Students Use iPods for Therapy Program

With music from their past, dementia patients may temporarily regain moments of memories.

Have you ever heard a song that transports you to another time and place? Research suggests the personal memories are often embedded in songs that people once sang.

The Social Work Club is using music to help retrieve memories--if only for a short time--in patients with dementia.

Working with Walla Walla Park Manor Rehabilitation Center, club members are implementing a music therapy program modeled after a non-profit program called Music and Memory. Using donated iPods, club members are providing personalized playlists for each patient's memory needs.

Senior Audrianna Wahlen, president of the Social Work Club, is leading the initiative. "We really connected with the project of Music and Memory, which uses music to help those with dementia regain memories," she says. "Many of the patients will regain lucidity for a while after musical therapy."

Wahlen says the club welcomes donations of iPods and CDs for the yearlong project. Especially needed are music CDs or iTunes gift cards.  They can be sent to School of Social Work and Sociology, Attn: iPod Program, Walla Walla University, 204 S. College Avenue, College Place, WA 99324. 

Published Jan. 30, 2014.

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