While studying music therapy at Elizabethtown College, Carissa focused extensively on bringing music to people of all ages and abilities through music therapy and performance. She primarily studied voice while also learning piano, guitar, and ukulele. Carissa participated in several music ensembles throughout her collegiate career including traditional choirs, percussion ensembles, and an all-female a cappella group. Following college, Carissa stays active in the a cappella community as an adjudicator for Varsity Vocals ICCA and ICHSA events. She arranges a cappella music for collegiate groups. Locally, Carissa co-founded a chamber choir called Suburban Singers and is a member and occasional leader of the Philadelphia Main Line Ukulele Group.
Carissa believes that all individuals are inherently musical and that talent can be tapped into through patient and compassionate guidance. She encourages all of her students to listen to the music around them and engage their own imagination to create a passionate musical experience.