Maggie James

Maggie James

BMus, GradDipMusicTherapy, NMT Fellowship, MBA

At St Margaret’s 1995-1997

Maggie James is a music therapist with 17 years experience in paediatric healthcare. She is the former Clinical Leader of Allied Health Oncology Services and the Music Therapy Department at the Queensland Children’s Hospital (QCH) and is currently on maternity leave enjoying her new adventure as a mother of two.

After graduating from St Margaret’s in 1997, Maggie embarked on her tertiary studies completing a Bachelor of Music. Upon graduation, she found she missed being around people and didn’t want to spend six hours a day in a practice room by herself. Wanting more than a musical connection with her audience, she explored career opportunities that would allow her to combine people and music.

She commenced studying a Graduate Diploma in Music Therapy and began working at the Royal Children’s Hospital in Brisbane the following year. Her role was to work with children who had an acquired brain injury, using music to engage them and their families during their rehabilitation.

Most recently, Maggie has worked in paediatric palliative care at the QCH, sharing music with ill children during their final days. She has established and delivered a range of paediatric clinical music therapy programs at QCH, specialised in the areas of intensive care and palliative care.  She is passionate in using music to support children in palliative care and believes every child’s life is valuable and should be loved and respected until the very end.

After ten years spent developing her clinical skills, Maggie chose to pursue a Master of Business Administration to allow her to gain additional skills to further her career. She graduated with an MBA in 2014 and is now using these skills in her role as board member of the Butterfly Children’s Hospice, the only paediatric palliative care hospice for orphans in China.

In 2014, Maggie was recognised for her community efforts in the area of paediatric palliative care and music therapy and awarded The University of Queensland MBA Service to Community Award. She was also the recipient of an Allied Health Presenter Award at the 2011 Oncology Nursing Group Conference, the 2007 Ruth Bright Presenter Award by the Australian Music Therapy Association, and the 1998 Margaret Nickson Prize at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music, Griffith University.

Among the first group of students to complete the music extension program at St Margaret’s, Maggie says her St Margaret’s education gave her a solid foundation and love of music and the courage to dream big.