Archive for tag: job shadow

Shadowing Experience

Top -manface

For the past few weeks, I have been lucky enough to shadow Andrew Peters, ND, DC, in Danville, Ill., a 1997 graduate of National. He allowed me to sit in on patient care and quizzed me on clinical skills and treatment plan recommendations. I loved the small town feel of his clinic and how close his patients are to him. Most of his patients are family friends and neighbors that he sees on a regular basis. This makes for cheap advertising through word-of-mouth and networking.

Dr. Peters is the only doctor in his clinic but has a reliable and people-friendly front office worker to take care of payment issues and scheduling. This is one thing he said is a must when starting your own clinic, as talking to patients about their health care and then asking for payment can sever the doctor-patient relationship and create a salesperson relationship. To avoid conflict he definitively recommends leaving the finances up to a tactful receptionist.

As for practicing naturopathic medicine in an unlicensed state, Dr. Peters also has a DC therefore he practices under the scope of his chiropractic license; however, he still practices many naturopathic therapies. The thing that surprised me the most was how receptive patients were to naturopathic medicine. Many of the patients he sees have sought him out and come from as far as 3 hours away for his services. This motivates me even more to stay in the Midwest and push for licensure. We need more people like Dr. Peters in here in Illinois to perpetuate the naturopathic movement!

Guest Lecture

CroninDr. Michael Cronin paid NUHS a visit recently to lecture on up-and-coming events and therapies in naturopathic medicine. Dr. Cronin has been an ND for 31 years and has recently become the president of the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP). He practices in Arizona, a state that allows a full scope of practice for NDs. As president of the AANP, he is committed to providing support to states like Illinois to help them gain licensure.

He also spoke on what it was like to start a naturopathic college, as he is the founder of the Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine in Arizona. He was a charismatic speaker and full of information. It was a great experience getting to meet him.

Danville, IL

Top -danville

Hello from Danville! I am writing to you from Danville, IL, where my fellow intern Sarah and I just arrived at our hotel to prepare for our shadowing opportunity tomorrow. We are meeting with Dr. Peters who is a chiropractic and naturopathic physician who practices as a primary care doctor here in Danville. He has a variety of conditions he treats but specializes in homeopathy. I am excited to report how tomorrow goes! 

Salvation Army

For the entire 10th Trimester, I am spending Friday clinic shifts at the Salvation Army in downtown Chicago. It has been nice to be able to track patients from week-to-week and monitor their progress. The past few weeks we have had several successful treatments with homeopathy, which I love to see!

One patient was treated with the remedy Calc Carb for a chief complaint of fear of change, as he was placed on a new job assignment and had a lot of anxiety revolving around his first day at the new job. The following week the patient reported feeling completely calm after being given the homeopathic remedy and had much less anxiety when he started his new job earlier in the week. I love hearing success stories like this, especially when these patients are so thankful for any help that we can provide.

Niece Update

My little niece is now 5 months old!! I recently found out she will be attending my graduation in April to watch
her Auntie A become a doctor. I am very excited about graduation of course, but most of all I am excited for my family to visit and spend time together. We have a trip planned for the Shedd Aquarium and Lincoln Park Zoo just to name a few! I can't wait to show off little Gracey!

Ashley -baby
Have a great week!!

Moving Update

Top -fam

Yes, I am still in the process of moving! Did I mention my family is the best?? My mom and brother came back to Chicago for Round 2 of moving. In between moving and packing we had time to go for a nice sushi dinner and have some good laughs! I have been so stressed out lately with keeping on track with graduation requirements and moving that it was nice to see my family! 

Scoping Out Shadowing Opportunities 

I've been searching high and low for a naturopath to shadow in the Midwest and finally came across Andrew Peters, DC, ND, in Danville, IL. He is more than happy to host a baby ND like myself and to teach me the ins and outs of practicing in Illinois. Although he practices in a rural community in southern Illinois, I am sure he has words of wisdom for setting up a practice and how to recruit patients. Dr. Peters said there should be many patient visits to sit in on and he also mentioned that his office is BYOS… Bring your own stethoscope! I am anxious to learn from a doc in the field!  

Valentine's Day

With Valentine's Day here, I had to keep up with tradition by buying Grissom, my boyfriend's cat, a Valentine's day outfit. He is a very docile cat and humors me when I want to dress him up. We had a good laugh torturing him!! 

Ashley -cat

I've heard the weather is going to warm up by the end of the week… I sure hope so! We need sunshine to melt all this leftover snow in Chicago! 

I hope everyone has a great week!

9th Trimester

This week marks the first week of my 9th Trimester here in the naturopathic program. I can't believe that is has been 3 years since I began and I have only 2 more trimesters left! 

Ashley -horns

After spending my last break on the West Coast from Portland to Los Angeles, I have to admit, I was anxious to get back into a routine. I had so many amazing experiences I don't know where to begin!

Naturopathic Convention

I started off my vacation in Portland, OR at the 25th Annual Naturopathic Convention. After a group of fellow students and I participated in the ZRT collegiate bowl we attended as many lectures at the convention as we could. This year there seemed to be a focus on naturopathic doctors treating abroad and how we can help support doctors internationally. One opportunity that students have been taking advantage of is in Nicaragua called NDI (Naturopathic Doctors International).  Dr. Tabitha Parker heads NDI and welcomes students to travel to her clinic to gain experience with international health care. I never knew there were such amazing things going on in naturopathic medicine! 

Naturopathic Clinic

Another opportunity a fellow student and I took advantage of was to shadow in a naturopathic clinic in southern California. The doctor had his practice in an office building with many other health professionals from dentists to family practice medical doctors. The ND mainly utilizes IV therapeutics treating conditions ranging from advanced cancer and liver cirrhosis to Lyme disease and overall disease prevention. In talking with patients during their treatment, I realized there is an absolute need for more NDs in southern California. One patient drove over 2 hours in traffic for her appointment and spent almost 3 hours in the clinic receiving treatment! She was literally begging my friend and I to start up practice in California because they need us there! I've never thought about living on the West Coast, however, there is a real demand for what we do! 


I finished off my vacation in Los Angeles beach hopping with the intention of not thinking about school and getting in some much needed R&R. Although it was very relaxing, I found myself continually visualizing myself after graduation and wondering what I am going to do! There are moments of pure terror not knowing what the future holds yet at the same time I am so excited to be done with school! 

Ashley -beach

As for now I am focusing on fulfilling all of the requirements for graduation including patient recruitment, papers and grand rounds presentations… in the meantime I will keep you posted this trimester what being a naturopathic intern is like!

ZRT Bowl

Top -garden

With the trimester flying by, the ZRT naturopathic medical students' collegiate bowl at the annual naturopathic convention is fast approaching! We have booked our flights to Portland and made our hotel reservations, so there is no turning back! The group of four of us who are going to participate are meeting weekly to practice for the competition. Although I am very excited to compete for NUHS, the next few weeks are going to be crazy with taking final examinations early, as we will be missing the last two weeks of school. A few crazy weeks of examinations will be well worth it once we are in Portland!

While we are out on the West Coast, we plan to shadow at as many naturopathic clinics as we can. Being so close to graduation, making connections with practicing NDs is becoming more important. We already have one shadowing opportunity set in stone in southern California. I can't wait to report back on how it goes!


In Botanicals recently, we discussed the topic of treating cancer in a naturopathic clinical setting. This topic is particularly interesting to me as I plan to pursue further education in naturopathic oncology. The field of oncology is vast, therefore most naturopathic treatments are guided toward integrated care and supporting the body's ability to tolerate debilitating chemotherapy, radiology and surgical treatments. There are many botanical formulas that can be given to help patients gain their energy and strength back after oncology treatments and to help with the brain fog patients experience post-chemotherapy referred to as "chemo brain." The lecture on botanical uses in cancer is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to naturopathic therapies that can be utilized as adjunctive treatment in the field of oncology.

We're also discussing oncology in depth in both Internal Medicine and Functional Medicine. I am a total cancer junkie… so I will be sure to relay any interesting information!

With about 10 papers and 3 presentations looming over my head I had better get to typing! Have a great week!


This week's photos show how our naturopathic garden is progressing.

Garden -sarah