Dr. Josef Hanson is Assistant Professor of Music Education (Instrumental) and Music Education Area Coordinator in the Rudi E. Scheidt School of Music at the University of Memphis. As a teacher, mentor, and scholar, he seeks unique ways to illuminate intersections between his two disciplinary passions, music education and arts entrepreneurship. Dr. Hanson teaches courses in instrumental music, research methods, and preparing new music faculty, and he leads the School of Music’s unique Freshman Seminar experience. He serves a team of wonderful colleagues in facilitating undergraduate, online master’s, and doctoral programs in music education. His research explores the role of innovation and entrepreneurial thinking in creating more sustainable, equitable, and impactful models of music teaching and learning. In demand as a presenter and clinician, he is a frequent contributor at a wide range of conferences, festivals, and symposia nationally and internationally. Before coming to Memphis, Hanson taught music in Maryland public schools and spent 17 years at the University of Rochester and University of Massachusetts Boston in various faculty, administrative, and advisory roles. He serves as Immediate Past President of the Society for Arts Entrepreneurship Education (SAEE), the premier professional organization dedicated to advancing artistic enterprise and innovation, and also serves on the editorial boards of the periodicals Contributions to Music Education, Music Educators Journal, and College Music Society Forums. In 2020, he assumed the role of Managing Editor of the Journal for Arts Entrepreneurship Education. He is a CMS-NAMM GenNext Faculty Fellow, a Research Affiliate of the Strategic National Arts Alumni Project (SNAAP), and a member of the Graduate Faculty and University Schools Research Consortium at the University of Memphis. He frequently serves as a juror and clinician for school music programs across the Mid-South. In 2021, he received the Rudi E. Scheidt School of Music’s Faculty Exceptional Teaching Award in recognition of his work with students.

Dr. Hanson earned his Ph.D. in Music Education at the Eastman School of Music of the University of Rochester (UR) in 2015. While there, he led graduate seminars, supervised student teachers, and received numerous graduate awards as well as the Donald J. Shetler Prize for Excellence in Music Education, Eastman’s highest honor for music educators. Hanson’s dissertation examined the entrepreneurial activities and motivational orientations of K-12 music educators in New York State. To further extend his research findings, he served as Eastman’s curricular liaison to music faculty at East High School in the City of Rochester as part of an innovative urban education partnership. Concurrent with his doctoral studies, Hanson developed his teaching skills in the College Music Department on the UR River Campus as well as in a variety of community contexts. He founded the UR Brass Choir in 2008 and led the group on numerous national and international tours, including to the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. In 2012, he was named a Faculty Associate within UR’s Institute for Popular Music and developed some of the first American collegiate courses dedicated to the scholarly exploration of heavy metal music and the concept album as an art form. Hanson became well-known within Rochester’s elder community for the interactive lectures and musical programs he presented to hundreds of seniors each month, including sold-out engagements at the Highlands at Pittsford, Ferris Hills at West Lake, Chatterbox Club, Finger Lakes Forum, and Jewish Community Center of Rochester. For seven years, he also taught music to middle and high school students as part of the Rochester Scholars pre-college summer program. He is a former faculty member of the David Hochstein Memorial School of Music and Dance and former executive director and conductor of the Frederick Symphonic Band, a regional honor band in suburban Maryland. While in Boston, Hanson founded the UMass Boston Music Collaboratory, a non-traditional, shape-shifting ensemble that enabled students to simulate real-world musical problem-solving by writing, arranging, rehearsing, and performing their own music with complete autonomy.

Dr. Hanson pursues an ambitious agenda of publications, presentations, and practitioner-oriented workshops. His writing has been featured in leading music periodicals, including Journal of Research in Music Education, International Journal of Music Education, Update: Applications of Research in Music Education, Artivate: A Journal of Entrepreneurship in the Arts, Music Educators Journal, Visions of Research in Music Education, Entrepreneurship Education and Pedagogy, Journal of Arts Management, Law, and Society, Contributions to Music Education, College Music Symposium, Journal of Historical Research in Music Education, Journal of Band Research, Music Perception, and Music & Politics. He has presented at numerous conferences, including the College Music Society Southern Chapter Conference, United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship Conference, Desert Skies Symposium, Society for Music Teacher Education Symposium, Oklahoma City and Oxford Symposia on the History of Music Education, International Conference on Self-Determination Theory, NAfME’s Eastern Division and Music Research and Teacher Education Conferences, Suncoast Music Education Research Symposium, and state music education conferences in New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Maine, and Connecticut. In 2019, he was named a finalist for the Outstanding Emerging Researcher Award sponsored by the Center for Music Education Research at the University of South Florida. Hanson’s scholarly interests include non-traditional music pedagogy, arts entrepreneurship, music teacher motivation, popular music, music education history, urban schools, and quantitative and psychometric research methods. His service contributions at the University of Memphis include coordinating the music education program, chairing and serving on various committees within the Scheidt School of Music and across the University, and serving on the steering committee to envision the curriculum for the new University High School. Hanson is a member of the Society for Arts Entrepreneurship Education, College Music Society, National Association for Music Education, Society for Research in Music Education, Society for Music Teacher Education, United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship, Tennessee Music Education Association, and International Society for Music Education.