Johnson honored with AMTA's Advocate of Music Therapy Award

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News Article

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School of Medicine & Health Sciences


GRAND FORKS, N.D.— Associate Professor Eric L. Johnson, in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences, was honored with the American Music Therapy Association’s Advocate of Music Therapy Award at the association’s annual conference in Sandusky, Ohio.

The award recognizes a person who is not a music therapist but who has contributed significantly to the MT profession. The AMTA works for the progressive development of the therapeutic use of music in rehabilitation, special education, and community settings.

At the conference, Johnson also presented “Teaching and Learning: Interprofessional Education and Music Therapy” with Dr. Andrew Knight of Colorado State University and Dr. Meganne Masko of Indiana University–Purdue University at Indianapolis.

Johnson is the director of the SMHS’s Interprofessional Education Program through which he also teaches in the School’s course on Interprofessional Healthcare, which includes students from nine health professions from across the University of North Dakota: medicine, nursing, occupational therapy, physical therapy, music therapy, communication sciences and disorders, social work, counseling psychology, and nutrition and dietetics. The course is run on a collaborative model that doesn’t assign a “higher” value to any one profession or specialty over any other in learning team concepts.

The goal of interprofessional education is collaborative practice. Students learn every person on a healthcare team is a patient advocate, which significantly reduces errors in the healthcare system and leads to high-quality care and improved cost efficiency.

Johnson is the medical director for the SMHS’s Physician Assistant Program and assistant medical director for the Altru Diabetes Center. He also is the president of the American Diabetes Association North Dakota Affiliate and the president of Tobacco Free North Dakota.


Denis F. MacLeod

Assistant Director, Office of Alumni and Community Relations

University of North Dakota

School of Medicine and Health Sciences

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