Weekends are for fun, relaxation and…ME!

As our students wrap up another successful trimester, they are setting aside their books and studies to tell us what they enjoy most about their weekends as Palmer students…

Q. What have you enjoyed doing or being involved with on the weekends since you have been a student at Palmer?

My time here at Palmer is almost over and I’m reminiscing about my favorite weekends at Palmer… I loooooved waking  up late on Saturday mornings, grabbing my mat and heading to a hot yoga class! Then I enjoyed spending some time looking at recipes online and doing some grocery shopping. I loved to make fun and more time consuming recipes on weekends and bring goodies to my friends that night, have people over or bring treats to school! I loved juicing fresh vegetables and fruits and the weekend allowed time for the rigorous cleaning of my juicer. I would often make a lot of meals ahead of time for the week. I also loved going to Scott County with friends and going for hikes in the spring, hot summer, or beautiful autumn leaves. I also looked forward to going out with a group of people to the bars of downtown Davenport: Kilkenny’s, Mac’s or for bustin’ a move on the dance floor at Carriage Haus. The Daiquiri Factory and the dueling piano bar (now Comedy Sportz) in Rock Island also provided some solid entertainment. I also loved traveling to Chestnut’s Wellness seminars, Nucca conference and a few Gonstead and Mopal seminars. I liked taking advantage of the free seminars the school put held on weekends as well like the Business modules. Hopefully my Sunday didn’t consist of too much studying, but usually it did. However I’d find something to clean, laundry to do, friends and family to call, or anything else before I resorted to my books on Sunday night to study for that hairy exam Monday morning. In my later trimesters, I really enjoyed minimizing scheduled events on weekends. I enjoyed hosting or attending dinner parties, wine nights, nail painting, or game nights at home with a few friends.  I also loved going on small trips to Le Claire or Galena, IL whenever my budget could afford it! I really loved my weekends at Palmer!

-Kaileigh Strath

On weekends at Palmer, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed doing things for me. All week long, I am completely committed to schoolwork, studying, things Palmer-related, but on the weekends, I relish the time to get out in nature for a run or bike ride, or time in the gym with buddies to play some basketball. It also tends to be when I eat the most enjoyable, but unhealthy things, such as pizza and ice cream. I use the weekends to re-energize for the upcoming week. Another aspect of this for me is attending an uplifting, inspirational church service on Sunday mornings to get grounded again.

-Kyle Collins

Since I became a student at Palmer I started running on a regular basis. One of my favorite things about the weekend is completing my long run for the week. I love the feeling of accomplishment from pushing your body not only physically but mentally. It is also a great way to relieve stress from the past week of school and prepare yourself for the next week.

-Katherine Melot

I like getting away from the city and going out in nature.  The Quad Cities and surrounding areas have an abundance of hunting, fishing, hiking, and camping opportunities.  Getting friends together on a day off to relax is just what I need at the end of a hard week.

-Brian Hall

One thing I love about Davenport is the Farmer’s market, open Saturday mornings. I can get tons of fresh groceries, from meat and cheese to fruits, veggies, even pasta. And going with friends makes it even more fun.

–Allison Nisbett

I enjoy spending my weekends at the Troxell Intern Program taking Sunday classes. The classes have helped me improve my palpation, technique, and visualization skills. I enjoy the opportunity to practice my Chiropractic skills any chance I get.

– Brittany Sedar

Group outings to Whitey’s Ice Cream on the weekends. There is nothing better than ruining a week of healthy eating by enjoying a full day’s worth of calories all condensed into a shake that is consumed in less than ten minutes. Yumm…ohh yeah, spending time with close friends is important too!

– Brad Francis

I love the farmers’ market on Saturday morning! Also, all of the music festivals that are going on in the summer are great! Recently, my weekends have been kept busy with the central high school marching blue devils band which I help volunteer with on the staff.

–Alec Schielke

So far, on the weekends I have been taking yoga classes at a local yoga studio, One Tree Yoga. As well, I have been attending Troxell Workshops, which have been very helpful in getting extra hands on experience. I have had fun spending time with classmates, and going out for pints at Front Street Microbrewery. I recently took a trip out to Galena with my roomates, and visited the winery there. It is a quaint little town with lots of unique shops, and beautiful views. It was great to get away. Other than that, I have been doing lots of studying!

-Chelsea Delorme

Since being a student at Palmer I have discovered many fun things to do on the weekends. A trip to the farmer’s market and a walk to the park or to the river happen almost every weekend. I love baseball so, during the summer months, I attended River Bandit games and I was on a recreational softball league.

– Jessica Richards

My favorite fall activity is planning my son’s birthday party.  This year he will be 2 on October 25.  My husband and I enjoy planning a fall birthday party.  This year his party will be at Patch’s Pumpkin & Honey Farm.  There will be pumpkins to pick, corn mazes to run through, corn pools to swim in, pony rides, hay rack rides, apple cider, pumpkin launching with their pumpkin cannon and of course Birthday Cake!  There are so many beautiful orchids and pumpkins patches to visit in Iowa and beautiful fall leaves to enjoy on your drive to any of them!

-Jennifer Katzer

7th tri and seeing patients!

I am currently in 7th trimester and seeing patients in the student clinic! It is so amazing to finally get to practice and apply everything that we’ve learned for the last two years. Seeing results in my patients structure, function and overall health is what chiropractic is all about, and it feels so great to start positively influencing lives!

I will be thrilled to open my own practice after graduation and reach as many people in my community as possible with chiropractic. With that being said, I have much to improve upon, and the next year will be crucial in my growth and development into the best chiropractor I can be. I am so excited for my future as a chiropractor!

– Lacey Pletchette, 7th tri, Davenport Campus

Stress, organization, procrastination, diligence (aka The Life of a Student)

We are getting to that point in the tri again … it is Tuesday with three weeks to go in a 14-week trimester. In seventh trimester, since it is so busy, it is really nice that my Radiology IV class ends early this week. My 12:05 class is now a free period and added onto my 11:10 lunch to make for a longer study break during the day. Or I will use it to catch up on clinic paperwork or eat lunch with a friend! I think visceral disorders class is also done next week! Only two and a half to go, then finals! Though I have learned not to wish my time away and say ‘I can’t wait until this trimester is over,’ because the next one just may not be as peachy as that sweet upper tri-man said last year, and I know I can learn to be happy in the moment. (Right?! Eventually?!)

Last night I felt frazzled as I left the gym, even though I thought it would help calm me down and burn off some steam. I have been thinking way too much about my schedule lately and letting it get to me and not acting upon it. How about instead of staring at the pages and organizing it, or procrastinating and cleaning your house, Kaileigh, you open your book and READ what you need to learn this week? It is funny how I have to keep learning the same lessons … take care of the small things, and life becomes easy and I love and enjoy every second. Palmer is fantastic if you can be diligent enough to study and get the small things you need to get done each and every day. It makes life so much easier, and then you are more prepared for tests when they come your way, you don’t have to catch up so much because you aren’t stressed so it is easy to listen in class. Also, you feel like you deserve a beautiful Friday night off with friends and maybe even a fun Saturday if you have worked hard during the week to do well.

Landslide, Iowa snowstorm, Cali earthquake, let’s shake things up a bit, though, because it isn’t always as easy to ‘stay on top of things’ for me as I make it sound. Especially by week 12 in January, when I feel like staying in bed allllll day when I wake up to an alarm, on a wee bit o’ sleep, and can feel the cold air pouring in my not-so-sealed-up window. Not so easy to make sure you keep school a priority each and every day for two years. I think this has happened to me almost every trimester, but I start to get a little down around week 12 and talk to my friends about what is going on, and we figure out that I am trying to do waaaaaaay too much yet again. So I clear my schedule, cancel a few plans, get to work on what needs to be done, do some reorganizing, and I’m back in the game!

The good news is, by seventh trimester I am starting to recognize this habit of mine, to try and do too much, a little earlier, before I call my mom sobbing and emailing her that I am having a total meltdown, hahaha! She said that two early trimesters in a row (maybe second and third) I emailed her with the same subject line of ‘breakdown’ about three weeks before the end of the tri. Sooooo Palmer isn’t an easy walk in the park. But if it were easy, everyone would do it. We as graduates of chiropractic college will get to reap the rewards of helping people move toward functioning at their optimum potential everyday.

In clinical psych class, Dr. Littrell tells us we will have patients genuinely thanking us every single day. We will get to contribute to improving the quality of their lives! That to me is worth a few weeks of feeling down and being sick of studying a couple times a year. Stay on top of your game, manage your time well, be disciplined, but have fun on weekends, listen in class, laugh with friends when you are delirious from studying, eat food that is nutritious for you, don’t feel guilty when you want something sickeningly sweet or heavenly salty, move your body, go to sleep, have a drink, and love yourself!  Maybe not in that order. Haha. Palmer is amazing place to learn a lot about yourself and go through fantastically fun times with wonderful people and gain really close relationships. We are in this together, my Palmer peeps! As my soon to be sister-in-law would say … love y’all!

~Kaileigh

Half-way there and almost in clinic

I am currently in 6th trimester and so excited for what lies ahead in my remaining year and a half at Palmer. I completed my first observations in the Palmer student clinic the other day and got a good taste for what my own clinic experience will be like. I can’t wait to have patients of my own and begin using all of the skills and techniques I’ve accumulated along the way.

I am currently in two technique classes, thoraco-lumbar and pelvic. Therefore, after this trimester, I will have officially learned the entire spine, which is so exciting! So upon entering the clinic in 7th trimester, the only technique class left to take is extremities. The progression of technique classes is very logical, and I love how we now get to start getting hands on in 2nd trimester.

Toggle Recoil … toggle-like?

Another holiday break came around. It is kind of crazy the time that is flying by. I am currently in Toggle Recoil Technique class, and within the next year I will have taken the rest of the technique classes that will be the foundation of my whole future!

Toggle Recoil Technique is viewed by some as an old and outdated technique that we are only taught because of the historical significance not only to our school, but to the whole world! I have had some students from other chiropractic schools ask me if we were taught Toggle Recoil, and I would reply that it is a required class for everyone who passes through our program and graduates from Palmer. Their replies have always been almost apologetic.

From my point of view, I feel apologetic towards them because they are not being taught a technique that is rooted in the history of Chiropractic–one that is backed-up with lengthy research projects that were performed within the same clinic space where we have our first clinic experience during 7th trimester.

It is true that we are not suppose to live in the past or to hold onto events from the past as if they are everything and “it.”  However, we are to revere events of the past and, as we embrace significant moments, we are to build upon them and to improve upon them to better society as a whole.

An interesting experience for me took place in the student clinic the other day (where the B.J. Palmer Clinic was). The Clinic doctor was trying to instruct the students in some hands-on training, and he stated that the thrust should be a “toggle-like” thrust. How often do we actually go through a class or an experience in life that at the moment we feel it is a waste of time, skill, money, etc.? On the flip-side, we need to look into these experiences with more long-term-vision spectacles to see how these can benefit our lives as well as those we will help heal themselves through not only our chiropractic care that we will offer, but also the healing as we take time to hear and communicate with our patients! (And please do not take this as something I have mastered … I am yet a peon in this aspect of enJOYing life.)

-Anton

My Palmer career is about to change … clinic!

As I lay in bed tonight, I feel a combination of excitement, nervousness and pure joy. I’m in 7th trimester, and my Palmer career is about to change tomorrow … we have our clinic induction ceremony at 2:50 p.m., and next week we start seeing patients in the Campus Health Center (CHC)! Wow, what an amazing feeling.

I have my outfit all laid out for tomorrow–I decided against a dress and am going with black pants instead. Haha, a few of the girls and I in my class were discussing what to wear to it today!

It is going to be held at Vickie Anne Palmer Hall, where Spizz Night and graduations are held, as well. I know of some classmates who have family coming to watch us be inducted, handed our white coats for clinic and our clinic badges on stage. My family members, however, are not attending this time because the closest one is 12 hours away. Hopefully they can come see us graduate in a year and four months instead.

This week was packed full of observing 8th trimester students in the CHC, a clinical psychology exam, a YMCA Christmas Family fundraiser, a spinography quiz, radiology set-ups, learning how to adjust wrists and deal with carpal tunnel, my roommate’s birthday celebration, yoga, my first adjustment and getting adjusted, making butternut squash soup, and learning how to tell what kind of anemia a patient has from blood work! (Haha, in no particular order.) I can say that my Palmer planner from the Bookstore is definitely keeping me grounded this week and able to sort everything out! Phew.

Seventh trimester is interesting because it is like two different worlds. We still have class from 7:30 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. with a couple breaks, then clinic in the evenings. We really only are required to be in the clinic two hours in the evening per week, but we are encouraged, and most interns spend more evenings than one in the CHC to pick up patients, gain experience, do paperwork, familiarize themselves with the computer systems and get to know their staff doctors. I really appreciate the help from the 8th trimester students who have held my hand so far and showed me the ropes. I want to pay it forward and help those 6th tri students next trimester when they feel as confused as I did/do (though I must say, things really advanced and made connections in my mind today 🙂 Yay! ) upon entering clinic in 7th tri.

– Kaileigh Strath

7th tri, check! Reflections on my first two years

Looking back on the last two years of Chiropractic school, I can see how far my classmates and I have come. At the beginning of 7th trimester when I was entering clinic, I could see how much further I still had to go. However, with 7th trimester now almost behind, I can wipe my brow and say, “I did it.”

Of all of the trimesters 1st and 7th are perhaps the most daunting. In first trimester you are wondering not only if you can do it, but if you can put forth the effort for three years. Then in 7th trimester, as you are asked to go from student to clinician, you ask yourself again, “Can I do this?” It’s a big leap from student to intern, from regurgitating information to critical thinking. At the beginning of 6th trimester if you had asked me if I was ready for clinic I would have said, “No way! I don’t know anything yet.” However, in those short four months I feel like I went through a metamorphosis and changed from just a student to a student doctor.

The same thing happened again during 7th trimester. I entered into it with doubt and excitement. Now that its almost over, I realize that it really wasn’t that big of a deal. I was prepared. I just needed to learn to trust in what I had learned in my classes, apply it and have confidence in myself. After all, the root word of education is educere, which means “to draw forth from within.” For success in the clinic, let go of some of that learned knowledge and let your intuition guide you.

It’s amazing to reflect back on the last two years of school. I came to Palmer without a science background. First trimester was like traveling to a different country. I didn’t speak the language, I didn’t know the people, and finding my way around was somewhat difficult. However, now that I am two years into the program with graduation on the horizon, I can’t believe the progress that I have made towards being a doctor of Chiropractic. So what do I know now that I wish I would’ve known then?

I can still remember 1st tri. It was overwhelming, and it took all I had just to keep up with my class load. Every week I would say, “I’ll go to club this week” or “that seminar sounds like fun.” However, I chose to stay focused on school. Now I wish I would have gone to more clubs and invested more time into trying out different techniques. I shyed away from technique clubs because I wanted to wait to learn a technique in the technique classes within our curriculum. I didn’t want to learn them wrong and then have to unlearn them. However, now that I am an upper tri student, I find it hard to make it to clubs due to other obligations. So now I feel as if I’ve missed a great opportunity to take advantage of the some of the extra things that Palmer offers.

On the other hand, I have taken three of the technique electives. Now I run into the challenge of choosing between techniques in the clinic. I also have the challenge of not only practicing and becoming proficient with Palmer Package, but also with the three other techniques that I have taken. Sometimes I wonder if I have spread myself too thin, but then I remember that education is a lifelong process. Once I leave Palmer I’ll be glad that I took these electives because I’ll have the rest of my life to become proficient at them. Learning does not stop the day you walk across the stage and receive your diploma. It really just begins. As inhabitants of the earth, we are life-long students. There is always something new to learn.

Even though I’m not completely through the program yet (only a year to go!), it’s been fun to reflect back on the last two years. I encourage you to do the same because no matter where you are at in the curriculum, it will surprise you how far you have come along.

– Annie Bernstein (Editor, The Beacon student newspaper)

Oh, what a tri … I’m in clinic!

Ok, it’s been a couple weeks into the trimester, and I am here to tell you that 8th trimester is where it’s at. After seven trimesters of fairly grueling academic loads, I have been blessed with what is shaping up to be my most favorite trimester so far.

Why do I sing the praises of 8th trimester you ask? Well, let me share with you why I love it so. I now have one trimester in the clinic system down and am feeling a lot more comfortable with seeing patients and working with the clinic paperwork. And now that my nerves are a little more calm, I enjoy clinic more and feel that I am better able to serve my patients more completely.

I can also tell you that my excitement to move over to the Academic Health Center (AHC) is building. I really look forward to being able to interact with patients from the local community. Now don’t get me wrong, there is a lot yet to be done before graduation on October 18, 2013 (not that I’m counting or anything). I am starting to prepare for the remaining parts of boards and spending a lot more time in the clinic. And, yes, I can’t believe how fast my time here at Palmer has gone by. When you start here, you will here that A LOT and will think that everyone telling you that is slightly off their rockers. But before you know it, you will be starting 8th trimester and reveling in the excitement just as I am.

If you have any questions about Palmer and life as a student here, feel free to contact me via email at matt.sharples@palmer.edu. I hope you are having a great day and wish you the best in furthering your chiropractic aspirations.

Hopefully I’ll see you on campus before October 18, 2012. 🙂

– Matt Sharpels

Clinic experience: Patient physicals

My first full physical in the clinic was awful. I love my patient, because they worked through it and came back for their next appointment. This day was when I learned that my mind goes completely blank when I get nervous.

I took her pulse about four times, because every time I went to write it down, I couldn’t remember what it was. Needless to say, that was a small matter of how much I forgot in that one appointment. The patient must have been thinking “How did this girl get this far?” but I really do know the orthopedic and neurological tests and how to perform them!

After you do certain parts of the physical, you go talk to your staff doctor and then come back to do other things based on the results of the first stuff. I left the exam room red and sweating like crazy because I felt like a complete idiot. I was able to work my way through my exam and get all the information I needed to diagnose the patient.

After the patient was done and had left, the doctor asked me why I was so red and sweaty. I explained what happened, and she just smiled and said “It can only get better.” This was definitely true. Everything has gotten better. I have become more confident, and I don’t let my nervousness get to me anymore. I mentally tell myself, “You know more than the patient, and they won’t know if you mess up.”

I have become very efficient and effective at doing physical exams the more times I have to do them. Thank goodness!

– Christa Scheffler, Davenport Campus

Clinic experience: Taking my first X-ray

My first X-ray that I shot was in the Campus Health Center, and it was of a knee. We hadn’t gotten through the whole lower extremity in class yet, so I was very nervous about taking them.

We get a partner to take the X-ray, write a report and do a radiology reading with. I chose an 8th trimester student, because they had already been through the class. It’s nice to have two minds working together, because if you don’t notice something or don’t know how to word something, there is someone else to rely on. I will be the first to admit that I forget things, so it’s nice to have someone else to help. After the X-rays were successfully taken, we had to begin our radiology report. It was easy to write because there wasn’t anything of significance on the films. The radiology review is what I was truly worried about. I had heard all sorts of scary stories about the different things that could go wrong.

We chose our time for the next day’s review sessions. My first radiology review was a great experience. Our report was well written, and we didn’t get “yelled” at for anything. I say “yelled” because that it what I had heard about, but really they just teach you ways to do things properly and make sure that you see all the important stuff on the film. I forgot to mention, radiology review is when you take your films and radiology report in front of a licensed chiropractic radiologist (DACBR for short) to make sure that you didn’t miss anything on the films and that the report is written properly.

I am glad that I have had many positive experiences in the radiology review, because you have to take 30 X-ray credits in order to graduate.

– Christa Scheffler, Davenport Campus