Hey AMTAS! My name is Zoe Levine, and I’m so excited to be serving as your secretary this year. One of my projects is taking all the cool stuff the regions are doing and publishing it in our blog. I’m hoping this serves as a source of inspiration for your schools and regions, so if you have any great ideas or events, please let me know at email@example.com. Maybe you’ll be featured next!
For our first blog post I thought we’d tackle everyone’s favorite task, fundraising. It’s often a difficult topic. How do we make the money we need without bugging people or having a million bake sales? Is there a way we can combine advocacy with our fundraising efforts? And when we do have a bake sale, is there a way to make it more successful? Our regions have been tackling these tough questions in creative ways.
Lip Sync Battles
One trend we saw this year was the Lip Sync Battle. Spike TV has had great success with their show “Lip Sync Battle,” where celebrities pretend sing and create crazy choreographed numbers to songs by other stars. If you haven’t seen the one where Zendaya dances just like Bruno Mars, you should really check it out. Great Lakes Region hosted not one, but two battles. The first was at national conference, and the second was at their regional conference. Both times they raised around $400! The Midwestern Region also spiced up their regional convention with a lip sync battle. UMKC students rocked out to “9 to 5,” which they had previously worked on with their intergenerational choir.
Sell, Sell, Sell
Selling items is hard, especially when most of your customers are other broke college students, but our regions and schools worked hard to produce practical and fun products. The Midwestern Region was busy designing specialty music therapy Jamberry nail wraps and music therapy notebooks. The notebooks featured notebook paper, staff paper, graph paper, and motivational music therapy quotes. I would definitely buy one. The western region sold bumper stickers and guitar picks, which are always in demand.
West Virginia University, where I go to school, held a bake sale where all the baked goods came with music therapy facts. We also designed a WVU School of Music tee shirt that we could sell to all the students, parents, and faculty in the school. It’s a large investment to buy all those shirts, but larger items means a higher profit margin, which means less times sitting at bake sale tables.
Outside the Box
Some schools really thought outside the box and designed fundraisers where they weren’t selling a product. This year the Mid-Atlantic Region introduced the canning product at their regional convention. The Canning Project collected monies for Music4More (music4more.org), a Baltimore-based organization that organizes instrument collections for children that need them, as well as Music Therapy programs for veterans. Individual universities designed special cans to collect loose change and small bills from conference attendees during breaks between sessions. Altogether, the students raised about $200 for the organization, with Temple University raising the most money. A special shout out should go to Jake Mauersberg who organized the project.
New England Region also thought outside the box with their fundraising and advocacy event. On March 11th, they hosted an event at the Italian American Club of Walpole. It was open to the public, and they reached out to families, educators, and students around the Walpole area. They had two live bands, a pizzeria, and a Mexican grill that donated music and food. with the GoFundMe page that was set up, they raised a total of $443.
Spotlight on: Rachel Williams
On every blog post, I’d like to introduce you to national executive board member, a regional president, or highlight a school, region, or member that did something special. With a fundraising themed post, I thought a good place to start would be the national treasurer, Rachel Williams. Rachel is a junior at The State University of New York at Fredonia (SUNY Fredonia) and is on a DIII Collegiate Track and Field Team. She throws shot put, weight throw, hammer throw, and the discus. Rachel joined AMTA to learn as much as she possibly could about Music Therapy and to make connections with professionals and other students. She strongly believes in MT advocacy and thinks AMTA is the best way to find opportunities to do so. She wants to be a music therapist to help children who have cancer win the battle of a lifetime, which is an admirable goal.