Debra Martz Melanson is retiring this year after 33 years of loyal service to Wilfrid Laurier University. Her position as Dean’s Assistant has impacted many people, but her closest connection with the Music Therapy students has been through her position as Administrative Assistant of Music Therapy for both the Undergraduate and Graduate level. Her efforts and support have been extremely special to the program, and in honour of her retirement Danielle Robert, president of MTSA, shared a tribute of our high regard for Debra.
Deb was always the sunshine on the fifth floor. She would always welcome us students with her smile, and even welcomed students into her own life. She even showed pictures of her cat and her son to students that would come up and visit her.
Deb would be the go-to-person for a good cry or just someone to talk to if you needed cheering up. Deb was usually one of the first people to know about a situation where one of our clients did not show up to session. These heart-breaking moments became less heartbreaking with a visit to Deb.
The advice she gave was straight from the heart. She will always be remembered by the students as a second mother. What made Deb even more special was that even if she was having a bad day, she tried her best to smile anyway!
None of us music therapy students know how Deb has managed to schedule in all of our practicum placements! Deb would always make sure that each student got what they wanted and needed and that everyone was happy in the end. It is safe to say that Deb is magical.
Deb has one of the kindest souls and will be missed by the students. She is the sunshine on the fifth floor. Deb, we thank you greatly for all the work you have done, all the advice given, and all of the smiles you put on our faces.
Danielle Robert, 4th year, MTSA President