Music Notes: Notable Alumni

Kandi Heard


In the spirit of graduation, we honor a UCA alumna who has recently graduated again! Kandi Heard received her Bachelor’s of Music degree in music education in 2013. This April, she has once again graduated…this time from the University of Minnesota with a master’s degree in music therapy.
At UCA, Kandi studied clarinet from Dr. Kelly Johnson and was a member of the Bear Marching Band under Professor Brantley Douglas, the Dixieland Band directed by Dr. Jackie Lamar, and the UCA Wind Ensemble conducted by Dr. Ricky Brooks. She was also a member of the Honors College and completed an undergraduate thesis with advisor, Dr. Paige Rose. Fittingly, her thesis topic was on reaching children with autism in the music classroom. As of today, Kandi is an official board certified music therapist.
To our knowledge, Kandi is the only UCA alumnus who has completed this degree and is working in the growing field of music therapy. She is currently employed as a memory care music therapist at Kingsley Shores Senior Living. Music therapists are increasingly employed in senior living centers, hospitals, and schools across the country, and they use music for a variety of physical, mental, and emotional care. Kandi states, “I’m so thankful to everyone who has supported me in this journey to being a music therapist. It’s been a long, difficult, journey, but I’m so very happy with how things have turned out, and I feel so very lucky to have these opportunities!” Congratulations to Kandi!