I don't even know where to begin…this is my last blog! I
seriously cannot believe I will be graduating in less than two
weeks! Of course, I am excited to move on from NUHS, but I have to
admit it is quite scary! Not being told where to be, what to do,
and how to do it every day is going to be a very big change… but I
am sure I will adapt!!
I have become very nostalgic lately, hugging my friends more
than usual knowing these last few days may be the last time we are
all in one room together. I have been saying goodbye to my
patients, which is extremely hard! I love my patients and will
think of them often even when I am gone! I poured my last tincture
in the dispensary, performed my last hydrotherapy and wrote my last
paper this week. Every day there is a new reminder of the closing
of my time at NUHS.
As sad as it may be to say goodbye to friends and old routines,
I am very happy to be going to spend time with my sweet little
niece! My sister is always sending me pictures of her… the latest
photo shoot was of my niece dressed up in her various bathing suits
with captions saying, "Come visit me soon Auntie A!" How could I
not want to just drop everything and go squeeze her!!
Hospital Shadowing Experience
This coming week I will be shadowing at a Joliet hospital ER
room. I have never been exposed to emergency room situations and am
very thankful for this opportunity! I know I will see things I
might never see in real practice. Not that I have any plans to
become an ER doctor, but it will be worthwhile to learn a new
aspect of medicine and meet new doctors. It's like Dr. Lou always
says… make friends everywhere you go!
As I move on to hopefully bigger and better things… I ask that
everyone stay in contact! I will certainly be happy to update
everyone on my goings on!
I hope that everyone has a happy and healthy summer!
As I had mentioned last week, my friend Sarah landed a job at
the National Center for Integrative Medicine in Joliet, Ill. The
official ribbon cutting of the new facility was last Wednesday and
it couldn't have been more perfect! The facility is
state-of-the-art with all new equipment and treatment rooms. To top
it all off, they served a gluten-free breakfast for everyone to
enjoy! The alternative health care wing turned out beautifully and
we are all so happy for Sarah and her new job!
Julie Martin, ND, our newest clinician here on campus, attended
the open house as the keynote speaker of the ribbon cutting
ceremony. Dr. Martin stated that what this facility is providing
for patients is exactly what health care needs in the future. One
place, full of a variety of health professionals, all ready to work
together to help regain health for their patients. She also spoke
on the future of naturopathic medicine and how our profession fits
into the current medical model. She commended Rao Kilaru, MD, the
facility owner, for helping to change the future of medical
practice to a more holistic practice.
I could not imagine working in such a beautiful space and wish
the medical group much success in the future!
Family in Town
I know it seems like I am always having family coming to town,
but that's because I have been! My boyfriend's brother came to
visit us from Boston for the weekend and we took full advantage of
the opportunity to go out on the town. We went to my favorite
comedy show in the world, The Cupid Players, at the IO Theater in
Wrigleyville. No matter how many times I see the show, I laugh just
as hard as the first time! I recommend it to anyone entertaining
family and friends when they come to town!
Women's Health Seminar
In addition to hosting company, treating patients in clinic and
celebrating Sarah's grand opening, I attended a Women's Health
Seminar put on by Metagenics. The seminar was a great review of the
biochemistry behind our natural therapies and provided many
research articles on the various modalities we frequently employ.
Although the seminar was long and took up my entire weekend, it was
free to students, which is very rare! You have to take advantage of
all the freebees being a student has to offer, because once you
graduate you are paying full price!
Next week, I plan to finish my patient numbers at clinic…
YEAH!!!!! So cross your fingers and your eyes for me!!
Well, I wish I could report the job search has been successful,
but it has been a bit rougher than I had anticipated. Because I
have been limiting my search to the Chicagoland area it has been
quite difficult to find a medical group to take me on. One of the
many challenges of job-hunting in an unlicensed state is explaining
what it is that I do in addition to why someone would hire me when
I am not currently licensed in this state.
As soon as I find a lead that sounds promising, it ends up being
a wash! I have hope, but am starting to think more seriously about
my Plan B. Plan B consists of moving in with my sister in Missouri
to help take care of my niece for the summer while studying for the
NPLEX 2 board examination, which will be held this August. While I
would love to have a job right out of school, it may be a blessing
in disguise that I am not finding just any job here in Chicago…
meaning I can focus on studying for boards and potentially move to
a licensed state and get a great job! Here's to hopin'!!
On another note, my best friend Sarah, who is also a 10th
trimester intern, landed a job at an integrated practice in Joliet,
Ill. The official open house for the alternative medicine wing of
her facility is this Wednesday and I am planning to attend with
several of my fellow interns. Our newest clinician, Dr. Julie
Martin, was asked to be the keynote speaker at the open house and
we are anxious to hear her speech! We are all very happy to
celebrate Sarah's success and will jump at any opportunity to hang
out together as one big ND bunch! As the days grow closer to
graduation, we are beginning to realize we aren't going to be
spending every day together as we have for the past 4 years. At
least we all have Skype to keep us connected!
While going through old photos I came across a couple of old
pictures of the ND gang back in our first year of school. The
picture at the top is of a group of ND students and I posing after
a long day at school during second trimester. I remember feeling so
adult back then, thinking that I knew exactly what I was going to
do once I graduated.
The above picture is from the white coat ceremony where we got
to dress up in our white coats and feel "official." Today, I can
say with certainty, I had no idea what I was getting into back
then! This program has taught me more about myself that I could
have ever known back then. I know in 4 years from now I will look
back at graduation and feel the exact same way… thinking I had
everything figured out!
This week we had a huge blizzard blow through Chicago that
brought almost 2 feet of snow! In some places it felt like much
more due to the high winds causing the snow to drift. As we sat in
clinic and watched the snowstorm roll in, we finally got word we
were able to leave early to get home safe before it really got bad.
Unfortunately for some, their normally 20-minute commutes were
turned into a 2-hour plus ordeal! Luckily for me, I had gone
grocery shopping the night before and could go straight home and
prepare for my first snow day of 2011!
Aside from catching up on television watching on my extra day
off, my boyfriend and I painted our living room and began
organizing my things into the apartment. It always sounds like a
good idea to paint until you realize how much prep work there is!
Filling nail holes, sanding bumps and priming… I will be glad once
it is done! By the end of the month I will be completely moved out
of my old apartment and finally know where all of my things
Saturday Clinic Shifts
This past Saturday was our first Saturday naturopathic clinic
shift. We were surprisingly busy with each intern on shift having a
new patient. Being open on a weekend day will help patients who
work during the weekdays to be able make an appointment. We have
had many new patients since the beginning of the year, which goes
to show that word about our clinic is being spread in the
community. With our newest staff member, Julie Martin ND, coming
from a strong oncology background, she has referred several
recovering cancer patients to our clinic for adjunctive care. This
is an awesome experience for the naturopathic interns as many of us
have a specific interest in oncology.
The search for a job continues! I have had some promising leads
in the Chicagoland area but am still unsure where I want to set up
shop permanently. I am looking forward to graduation, which will
open up a lot more time for job searching. One step at a
Have a great week and let's hope for no more snow!!
This past holiday break was one of the best! Not only did I get
to spend quality time with my friends and family, I was able to
meet my boyfriend's family in Boston! Being a Midwest girl, I had
no idea what to expect in "Bean Town." I swallowed my first oyster
out of a half shell, walked along the Freedom Trail and went to a
New England Patriots football game! I was hoping to have a Boston
accent after the trip… but my friends back home gave me a hard time
when I tried to incorporate the term "wicked" into normal
The one thing that surprised me was how many people know about
naturopathic medicine. One of my boyfriend's classmates from
college shared with me her father's story of his battle with colon
cancer. He utilized alternative medicine including acupuncture and
naturopathic medicine in addition to traditional treatments. Her
father is in full remission currently and now the whole family
seeks alternative medicine practitioners for their health care
needs. This was only one of the many people I spoke with who have
been recently looking for a natural health care doctor. This got me
thinking more seriously about practicing in a licensed state, as I
want to utilize all of the modalities I have been trained to do.
There are several states in the Northeast that currently license
naturopathic medicine including Connecticut, DC, Maine, New
Hampshire, and Vermont.
One website that I have found particularly helpful in seeking
future job opportunities is the American Association of
Naturopathic Physicians. This website will advertise
naturopathic doctors in any state as long as they have graduated
from an accredited program, passed the NPLEX board exam Part 1 and
Part 2, and hold a license in a licensable state. This site also
lists job opportunities around the country for naturopathic
physicians. Another way to search for employment is good old
craigslist. My close friend Sarah was recently hired at an
integrative practice in Joliet, Ill., and she found the job listing
on craigslist! It goes to show that with a little research there
are opportunities out there.
Clinic has been getting busier every week as we are starting to
establish a larger patient base. With our new clinician on staff,
Julie Martin, ND, we are able to see more patients at one time,
which will allow greater flexibility for our patients. In addition,
we are adding a naturopathic shift on Saturday to increase our
availability in clinic. While this will be more work for interns,
we are excited to bring in more patients and practice naturopathic
I hope everyone had a nice and restful break!
• ND Clinic Format
• Love Your Profession
• MD vs. ND
• CAM Day
• Working During School
• Q&A with Readers
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