Congratulations to National University members of the Chicago Chapter of the Naturopathic Medicine Student Association (NMSA), for their first-place win of the Golden Avocado Award. The competition, now in its fourth year, was part of Naturopathic Medicine Week, October 7 – 13, to raise awareness of naturopathic medicine.
Last year, the Chicago Chapter won second place in the competition. This victory comes on the heels of an earlier 2018 win; in July National University’s students captured the NMSA Trivia Cup.
Schools scored points toward the Golden Avocado Award by offering various events or activities for participation on their respective campuses. Each event’s value ranged from 10-40 points, with posting and/or sharing on social media earning up to 40 points daily.
However, the Award comes with more than just bragging rights among U.S. and Canadian Naturopathic Medicine (ND) schools. For NUHS students, it means the opportunity to gain professional experience through the Illinois Association of Naturopathic Physicians (ILANP) prior to graduation, and to explore volunteer opportunities.
“It also signifies our commitment to spreading an awareness of ND among students in different programs and increasing our sense of campus community,” said student Janice Jorges, Chicago Chapter NMSA president. Fun events were offered at different times of the day so as many students as possible could participate. Activities included: a talent show; trivia contests; yoga breaks; a park outing to unwind (for soccer, discs, bags); a mock NMSA Cup competition; a family-friendly pumpkin carving contest; a Guacamole party, and more.
“Most importantly, as students we lived what we learn. During Naturopathic Medicine Week we slowed down, invested our energy into building relationships, and had fun while celebrating our medicine,” Ms. Jorges said.
She attributes their win to a successful group effort. The Chapter collaborated with National University’s Yoga Club and Pride Medical Alliance, the Learning Resource Center (LRC), faculty, and staff. Dr. Joseph Vazquez, ND, served as master of ceremonies for the talent show; Dr. Fraser Smith, ND, led groups through some Yoga poses, and Nakiesha Pearson, DC, ND, moderated the mock NMSA Trivia Cup. Additionally, Mr. Russ Iwami, reference librarian, Ms. Katrina Plotke, coordinator, Office of Student Services, and the Office of Marketing and Communications supported campus efforts.
Students who are interested in volunteering with the ILANP, planning naturopathic events/speakers, or being a chair on the Chicago NMSA chapter board may contact [email protected].