Of all the traditions in society, that of taking stock at the beginning of a new year is probably one of the most healthful. After all, you can’t know where you’re going without remembering where you’ve been! The AANMC schools enjoyed a fruitful 2011, much of which was dedicated to ensuring the future of naturopathic medicine. Read on to review some of our schools’ highlights from the past year!
Opening Doors – both Literally and Figuratively
Bastyr University’s big news in 2011 was the announcement of a second campus in San Diego, Calif., which plans to initiate its doctor of naturopathic medicine program in fall 2012. Bastyr’s market research found strong interest in natural medicine in the San Diego area, and Bastyr’s future faculty and students, along with California NDs, have all expressed enthusiasm for the program. The state’s shortage of primary care physicians makes it a promising place for healers to establish careers. The new campus location sits in the center of the city’s health-science research cluster, just a few miles from beaches, coastal wild lands and protected canyons.
This year, the Ottawa Integrative Cancer Centre (OICC) opened its doors to provide multi-disciplinary complementary medicine and whole-person care to people with cancer, cancer survivors and those seeking cancer recurrence prevention.The OICC is a not-for-profit care and research center with a mission to deliver treatment that is scientifically grounded, evidence-informed complementary medicine. It is the first integrative oncology and research center of its kind in Eastern Canada. The OICC’s regulated health care practitioners have training in naturopathic medicine, family therapy, physiotherapy, psychiatry, nutrition, acupuncture, massage therapy, exercise therapy and yoga. The Center is governed by the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine (CCNM).
National University of Health Sciences (NUHS) opened a new teaching clinic in 2011, the second NUHS clinic to offer internship opportunities for its naturopathic medical students. The new NUHS Whole Health Center in Naperville, Ill., boasts an integrative medical environment. Interns work under an ND who is also a doctor of chiropractic, and benefit from inter-referral and consultation with the adjacent private practice of an MD. This exceptional clinical training experience is in addition to the regular internship hours ND students spend at the on-campus clinic, where they work with ND clinicians to treat patients under the supervision of primary care physicians.
With the 2011 addition of a new herbarium and climate-controlled botanical medicine lab, UBCNM faculty and students are now in the process of building a library of botanical specimens. This library will include plants useful in treating a wide variety of health conditions; for example, the traditional “whiskey plant” of Oklahoma is used in Cherokee medicine to treat HIV, cancer and other chronic diseases. As a working library of plant specimens, the new herbarium will be devoted solely to medicinal herbs for faculty and student research and study. The first fall plants from the botanical garden have now been pressed, mounted and stored.
Involving Others – in the Mission of Naturopathic Medicine
A gift of $1.35 million from one of the most respected nutritional advocates in the United States will help the National College of Natural Medicine (NCNM) educate Oregon families about healthful food choices and eating habits. The donation, which comes from Bob and Charlee Moore, founders of Bob’s Red Mill Natural Foods, will fund NCNM’s pilot Ending Childhood Obesity (ECO) Project and help establish an on-campus research/teaching kitchen. The ECO Project is a free, community-based nutrition program that aims to reduce chronic disease and morbidity associated with childhood obesity by promoting healthful food choices and empowering families through education and training.
To address the advantages and challenges inherent to campus growth, Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine (SCNM) launched its campus master plan in 2011. The College is partnering with campus planning and architectural expert Ayers Saint Gross, and is actively engaging its key constituents – creating a forum for faculty, staff, current students, clinic patients and members of the community to voice their own ideas for expansion. While the final details have yet to be unveiled, this new growth may involve classroom, clinical and/or medicinary space. The chief aim: to retain the spirit and character of SCNM while simultaneously enhancing the current facilities to address the complexities of an 18-year-old, growing program and its increasing student enrollment.
This was a year for community engagement at the Boucher Institute. Following the great success of last February’s first annual naturopathic symposium, Naturopathic Approaches to Oncology, Boucher is currently planning its second symposium, Naturopathic Approaches to Neurological Health, to take place on February 4, 2012, and feature talks on Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, PTSD and neuroplasticity.And inside campus walls, Boucher students themselves remain engaged, even beyond the classroom: Year 2011 saw the establishment of a student-led Peer Support Group, which provides student-to-student counseling services; a Sports Medicine Club that hosts a brown bag Lunch ‘n’ Learn speakers series; and a Global Health Group, currently in the planning stages. Other longstanding groups like the Sustainability Committee, the Garden Committee and the Boucher Institute Chapter of Natural Doctors International continue to flourish.
Meanwhile, beyond campus grounds, the rest of the natural health world has been advancing as well. Read Top 10 CAM News Stories 2011.
Take your first step to becoming a naturopathic doctor today: Apply to the ND school of your choice.
View our archives to track the growth and progress of the accredited ND schools over past few years:
Issue #30: Naturopathic Medical School Milestones 2010
Issue #26: Naturopathic Medical School Milestones 2009
Issue #22: Naturopathic Medical School Milestones 2008
Issue #17: Naturopathic Medical School Milestones 2007
Issue #11: Naturopathic Medical School Milestones 2006
Author Shana Hinds is a freelance copy editor and ghostwriter based in Seattle, Wash. She works with both print and online articles, as well as books, covering a wide variety of topics, from naturopathic medicine to sustainable sushi to classic cars.