Recent graduate, Fan Jiang of Beijing, received her master of science degree in oriental medicine from National University this past December. Not only did Fan graduate as valedictorian of her class, she finished the program one trimester early.
Fan Jiang first came to the United States in 2006 to earn a bachelor's degree in biochemistry from the University of Minnesota in Duluth. "I started to explore career and graduate school options, and considered becoming a pharmacist. But in my gut, I just didn't feel that working with drugs was the right answer for me. It didn't seem like the best approach to health care."
That's when Fan decided to explore oriental medicine. "Since I was born and raised in China, I did have a bit of knowledge about oriental medicine, but surprisingly, I'd never had acupuncture. I was a little afraid of needles when I was younger! However I had taken herbs before, and had seen many success stories among people I know who had used traditional herbal medicine."
Fan chose NUHS for her oriental medicine degree. "I liked the clinical part of the program. This profession is hands on. The more experience you have, the more cases you see, the better. Our clinical experience here at NUHS is a big strength."
During her clinical training, Fan not only worked as an intern in the on-campus integrative medical clinic, she also volunteered in treating veterans in the PTSD clinic, and spent two trimesters working with pain patients at Cook County's Stroger Hospital.
"Where I live, oriental medicine is part of daily life and of keeping well - not just something we turn to when we get sick," says Fan. "I think too often people here wait to see the doctor until they have a severe problem, which makes it harder to treat. If you can help patients balance their chi, their diet and their lifestyle earlier, they might not get sick."
To explore more about the master's degree programs in acupuncture and oriental medicine at National University, make plans to attend a Student for a Day or Visit Day event.