Connolly Middle School Special Education Teacher Annette Asuncion received the “Paulinian Plaque of Excellence” from St. Paul University Manila in the Philippines for her volunteer work and assistance in opening the Music Therapy Program.
Asuncion was heavily involved in the development and grand opening of the Music Therapy Center, which formally opened early October.
Asuncion was selected to cut the ribbon during the opening ceremony and had the opportunity to give a demo lecture and show some of the activities that clients would participate in.
The center will provide music therapy services for children, adolescents, and adults with various challenges.
As with all music therapy sessions, the goals of music therapy offered at this center depend on the needs, abilities, and challenges of the clients. Session goals can range from increased mobility to improved communication skills, to reduced anxiety or personal issue exploration.
Through the program’s well-planned, professional, and skillful use of music, St. Paul University Manila Music Therapy Center hopes to help people of all ages with various disabilities improve their quality of life and reach their highest potential.
“We were able to establish the first Music Therapy Center in the country and we have produced the first graduate for the Music Therapy Masters Program. I feel so privileged and blessed to have received this award,” said Asuncion.
Connolly Principal Kathy Mullery was extremely pleased to hear the news of Asuncion receiving the award.
“Annette continues to be such an inspiration to all who are around her ¬– students, parents, teachers, staff, administrators and our community. She is passionate about helping and serving others, and she is always willing to share her expertise in order to improve any situation. She is an amazingly talented teacher and was recognized in 2013 as the Tempe Diablos Excellence in Education Teacher of the Year. We are blessed to have her as a member of the Tempe Elementary School District family!” said Mullery.
Asuncion visited St. Paul University Manila in Manila, Philippines during summer and fall breaks for the past two years. She will continue her volunteer endeavors in the Philippines over the next three years.