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About the Event

From Overwhelmed to Fulfilled: Cultivating Resilience for a Sustainable Career in Music Education

Tuesday, March 26, 2024, 7:00 – 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time

Tuesday, April 30, 2024, 7:00 – 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time

Tuesday, May 28, 2024, 7:00 – 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time

This three-part NAfME health and well-being series will focus on the mental fitness and well-being of music educators so they may develop skills and strategies to thrive in today’s educational landscape. Presented by experienced mental health professionals, topics will include: Experiencing overwhelm; the intersectionality of trauma including secondary traumatic stress (STS); how to recognize and avoid burnout; developing healthy work habits and coping strategies; advocating for individual needs; establishing boundaries; and finding sustainable balance and fulfillment in work and at home. Throughout the series, the content will be interspersed with research-based strategies and tools to support music educators in overcoming these challenges. Registrants are encouraged to attend all three sessions, as they build upon each other; however, participants are welcome to attend any session as they are available!

With one registration, you will be registered for the entire three-part series. The series will be live online 7:00–8:00 PM ET on the following Tuesdays: March 26, April 30, and May 28. We hope you will join us as we strive to make our personal health a priority.

Session 1, March 26, 2024: Understanding educator mental health and wellness through the challenges of overwhelm, trauma, secondary traumatic stress, and burnout.

Facilitator: Nathan Rødahl, Northwest Division Representative, NAfME Council for Orchestral Education

Presenters: Rebecca Jonas, Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor; Abigail L. Van Klompenberg, National Board Certified Teacher in Early and Middle Childhood, Vocal Music; Diona Shelton, Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Session 2, April 30, 2024: Finding sustainable balance by developing healthy work habits, learning healthy coping strategies, and recognizing and avoiding burnout.

Presenters: Amelia Nagowski, co-author of the book Burnout and The Burnout Workbook; Tara Nayak, naturopathic doctor.

Session 3, May 28, 2024: Finding joy and fulfillment by defining professional boundaries and creating sustainable teaching and learning environments for educators.

Presenters: Christian Bernhard II, Professor and Area Head, Music Education, State University of New York at Fredonia; Presenter #2 TBD.

Session 1, March 26 Presenters:

Rebecca JonasRebecca Jonas is a musician, therapist, and educator living in Denver, Colorado. She holds a B.M. in cello performance from Mercyhurst University (Pennsylvania), an M.A. in music education from Mansfield University (Pennsylvania), and an M.A. in clinical mental health from Colorado University in Denver. A former Orchestra Director, she taught elementary through high school students in Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Colorado. In 2023 she founded Tune In Mental Health Services, a practice that focuses on serving musicians, artists, educators, creatives, neurodivergent individuals, and members of the LGBTQIA+ community. Rebecca remains an active performer, often appearing with her band All Through the Night, playing in local symphonies, bluegrass jams, and accompanying contra dances.

Abigail Van Klompenberg Abigail Van Klompenberg is Assistant Professor of Music Education at Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota, where she teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in music education. She also supervises student teachers in Minnesota and North Dakota, including placements in elementary general music classrooms and secondary performing ensembles. Before teaching at the collegiate level, she taught K-12 general music and choir in Arizona, Texas, South Carolina, and Kentucky. She is a National Board Certified Teacher in Early-Middle Childhood (Vocal Music) and is fully certified in Orff Schulwerk by the American Orff Schulwerk Association (AOSA).

Nathan Rødahl PortraitNathan Rødahl is the director of the Port Angeles High School Orchestra and the Bainbridge Island Youth Orchestra in Washington, where he advances best practice and diverse repertoire. He also serves as principal conductor of the Ensign Symphony, where he previously served as concertmaster, which performs in Benaroya Hall in Seattle. He is a member of the NAfME Council for Orchestral Education and the Connected Arts Networks program.

Diona SheltonDiona Shelton has practiced as a school social worker in Illinois for more than 15 years. She holds a B.S. in social work from Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville, a master’s degree in social work from Saint Louis University, and a doctorate from Capella University in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Her doctoral research is focused on exploring the best practices that result in improved experiences for young adults with autism as they transition into post-secondary education. Diona is the author of Little Man, a book to assist Black parents in broaching topics of racism, and co-author of Sistah Hooded: Stories of Strength and Resilience on the Doctoral Journey. She holds a Type 73 Professional Educator License and is CEO and founder of New Beginnings Counseling Services, PLLC.

NAfME presents this live virtual event at no charge to all as a service to the music education profession. To register, you must enter your NAfME member information or create a nonmember account. After registering, check your email for instructions. A recording of this program will be available to all registrants for one week following the live event. Members can also view archived NAfME webinars in the NAfME Academy. The views expressed are those of the presenter; they do not necessarily reflect the views of NAfME.

April 2024 Teaching Music

Start Date

March 26, 2024

End Date

March 26, 2024

Start and End Time

7:00 pm - 8:00 pm (ET)


  • Music Education Profession
  • Teacher Self Care

Event Category

  • Live Virtual
  • Webinar

Teaching Levels

  • Administrator/Supervisor
  • College/University
  • PreK-12

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