The Music Therapy Wellness Clinic at CSUN
The Music Therapy Wellness Clinic provides individually designed music activities for children and adults with disabilities and special challenges, including autism, developmental delay, physical, mental and emotional disorders, and learning disabilities.
Music therapy is a field that uses music in a prescribed manner as a treatment for rehabilitating, maintaining, and improving the lives of persons with physical, intellectual and emotional disabilities. Music Therapy is a creative arts therapy similar to others such as Art, Dance, and Drama Therapy. It is, however, unique in that music provides an accessible and enjoyable medium for growth and learning. It is a healing art, based on scientific principles and grounded in research.
The Music Therapy Wellness Clinic is dedicated to creating an environment where an individual with special challenges can acquire necessary life skills through the unique, creative and enjoyable medium of music. Our therapists are internationally recognized and encompass a range of techniques and areas of expertise. Our entire treatment team is dedicated to creating the opportunity for each participant to express his or her true creative essence while gaining needed skills and enhancing self-esteem.
The Music Therapy Wellness Clinic is a teaching clinic for the CSUN Music Therapy Department. As such, all sessions are utilized for student observation and learning and are part of the educational process for future music therapists.
Some of the benefits of Music Therapy include:
- Development of fine and gross motor skills
- Improvement in acquisition and application of academic fundamentals
- Development of practical life skills
- Increase in socialization
- Enhancement of self-esteem
- Expansion of the quality of life through musical enjoyment and creative self-expression
The Music Therapy Wellness Clinic provides individual and group sessions conducted by a highly trained and experienced Music Therapist. A variety of instruments are used, including piano, guitar, percussion, autoharp, recorder, electronic instruments, harmonica, and voice.
Director: Ron Borczon, MT-BC, MM
Ron Borczon is Professor of Music Therapy and the author of "Music Therapy: Group Vignettes", and Music Therapy a Fieldwork Primer." He is known internationally for his innovative approaches with victims of traumatic events. He has received the highest award of the AMTA for his work after the 1994 Northridge Earthquake. He worked with Oklahoma City Survivors from the 1995 bombing and travels extensively to support communities affected by violence and natural disasters. For more information on Professor Borczon go to: http://www.csun.edu/~hfmus003/BioBorczon.html
Assistant Director: Julie Allis Berghofer, NRMT
Julie Berghofer received her musical education, music therapy training and teaching credential from London, England. She has over 20 years experience in the pediatric filed with a particular interest in the role of music therapy in early intervention, with children on the autistic spectrum and those with profound multiple needs. Julie has worked as a clinician, consultant, teacher, supervisor and examiner in the field both in the UK and USA. For many years she was Head of the Music Therapy Services for a National Health Trust in the south of England and was part of the tutorial team at the prestigious Nordoff Robbins Music Therapy Center, London. Since moving to Los Angeles in 1996, Julie has been an integral part of the clinical team at the Music Therapy Wellness Clinic, CSUN. She currently serves as Assistant Director, teaches improvisation classes and supervises music therapy students. Julie lectures extensively on the ‘Nordoff Robbins Creative Music Therapy ‘approach and enjoys working with other professionals regarding collaborative interventions .She is involved with various parent groups and professional associations at regional and national level. In 2003 Julie was awarded the Professional Practice Award from the Western Region American Music Therapy Association for her continued contribution to the profession. She is one of the authors of the IMTAP – the ‘Individualized Music Therapy Assessment Profile’, published by JKP in 2007, which is gaining recognition as a valuable, comprehensive formal tool for music therapists. Julie continues to learn from her many clients and colleagues, striving always to enable students to reach their potential within positive musical interactions.
Cameron Mooney, MT-BC
Having finished his coursework in Music Therapy in 2013 at Cal State Northridge, Cameron went on to complete an internship working with adults with developmental disabilities. He has experience working with a wide variety of clients ranging from children to elderly, functioning at typical to severely disabled levels. He has over five years experience in the use of ABA therapy techniques with children with autism and related disorders. Piano is his main instrument, with which he has over 12 years experience, though he is skilled with the guitar and various other stringed and percussive instruments as well.
Julia Summers, MT-BC
Julia Summers is a board certified music therapist. She holds a master’s degree in music therapy from New York University and practices a humanistic, existential approach. Julia completed her internship at Beth Israel Medical Center, where she was certified by Dr. Joanne Loewy to practice the First Sounds: Rhythm, Breath, and Lullaby technique in the NICU. Julia has also worked with oncology patients, children in pediatric units, patients and families in hospice and palliative care, and adults suffering from Alzheimer's and dementia. Along with her current work at the Music Therapy Wellness Clinic at CSUN, Julia is working with children with autism and developmental delays through the Children’s Music Fund. Julia is honored to have the opportunity to spread the joy of music and to take part in the thrill of making new connections through live interactive musical experiences.
Yessenia Gonzalez, MT
Yessenia is a graduate from the Music Therapy Program at CSUN where she was awarded the Marilyn Hankins Cultural center Scholarship Award and the CSUN Arts Council Scholarship Award. She completed her clinical training at Fairview Developmental Center, in Costa Mesa California where she worked with adults with developmental disabilities to provide quality service that meet individual needs and promote self-determination and independence. Her clinical training at California Sate University of Northridge focused on children and adults with developmental disabilities, training at the following facilities: CSUN Wellness Clinic, Lokrantz Special Education Center, Partners for Children, Magical Musical Moments, and Music Sway.
Yessenia conducts an Ipad inclusive music therapy program for the Simi Valley School District, is contracted through MeliMusic music therapy, and gives piano lessons at her private studio. Yessenia is currently attending graduate school for a Master of Social Work degree at the University of Southern California.
Registration and Fees:
- $40 per 25-minute individual session
- $60 per 45-minute individual session
- $40 per 45-minute group
- $50 materials fee per semester
The Rising Star Choir
The Rising Star choir is a unique musical experience geared toward children with Autism. The choir sings music of different styles as well as music that the choir members compose individually in addition to music composed as a group. During the rehearsals, non-music goals such as socialization, self-esteem, attention to task and the creative process are considered and structured for by the Music Therapist. Currently, the choir participates in two performances yearly, one in December and the other in May. Funding from the Rising Star Music Fund provides the tuition for all participants so that there is no cost to the family. The choir generally meets on Saturday afternoons. If interested in more information on the choir, please contact the clinic.
The Sunshine Singers
The Sunshine Singers is a music therapy group whose approach is based upon the naturally inherent therapeutic situations that result from learning, rehearsing, and performing as a choir. Choir members are young adults with a wide array of challenges. Each individual is encouraged to share their unique voice, and when all these voices come together, the Sunshine Singers shine. Despite the differences between the individual members who make up the choir, each and every one embarks on a journey of creative collaboration. The infectious joy of this process is then shared with an audience, who walk away touched by the music of these performers. The cost of the Sunshine Singers is $50.00 per month.
The Sunshine Singers Holiday Concert performing at CSUN.
The presentation of the $15,000 donation by Shari Hoffman and Dennis Dreith of the Environment of People Foundation.
Thank you to The Environment Of People Foundation for their generous gift of $15,000.00 to the Music Therapy Wellness Clinic!
The Environment of People Foundation raised $15,000.00 for the CSUN Music Therapy Wellness Clinic. The fundraising event took place on in March 30, 2014 on the New York Street at CBS studios. The events of the day included a silent auction, free subway sandwiches with each paid admission and performances by Ellis Hall and Phil Upchurch. The Sunshine Singers of the CSUN Music Therapy Wellness Clinic were the featured act. Actress Laura San Giacomo presided as Honorary Chair.
The proceeds of the event will go to fund scholarships for clients who are in need of assistance in order to attend the clinic.
To contact the clinic please call 818-677-5663 or you can email us at