Peña joined the University of Oregon faculty in 2012 as assistant professor of oboe and general music. Prior to joining the Oregon faculty, she held the position of Associate Principal Oboe/English Horn with the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra (2002-2011) and was assistant professor of oboe at the University of Northern Colorado (2010-2012).
She has recently performed with Opera Colorado, Santa Fe Opera, Oregon Bach Festival, and the Astoria Music Festival. Peña maintains membership in the New Mexico Philharmonic and is a core musician member of Chatter – a contemporary music ensemble in Albuquerque, NM. She has made concerto appearances with the New Mexico Symphony and the Southwest Florida Symphony, and additionally has subbed with the Kansas City Symphony, Jacksonville Symphony, The Florida Orchestra, Naples Philharmonic, Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, and Music from Angel Fire, among others.
Peña received her Master of Music degree from the University of Missouri – Kansas City where she was a student of Barbara Bishop, and her Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Illinois, where she studied with Nancy Ambrose-King. Melissa and her husband, trombonist Carson Keeble, live in Eugene where they are excitedly exploring the Pacific Northwest.