Stepping out into the real world

Third quarter has turned out to be the quarter of miscellaneous things, and I mean that in a good way!  In addition to our regular classes, in third quarter we take a CPR course (part of Emergency Procedures) and also go to one of Palmer’s Outreach Clinics to do our first “rounds” (part of our Chiropractic Clinical Evaluation I). Rounds turned out to be a pretty interesting experience, and definitely something to look forward to.

I was in the first group from my class to go to Rounds, so I wasn’t really sure what to expect; all I knew was that we were going to a homeless shelter and would be helping out with taking vitals before the patients saw the student interns for a chiropractic adjustment.  It turned out to be a really valuable and interesting experience, as it was one of my first experiences working with real people (instead of my classmates).  I saw four patients and took their blood pressure and temperature, then performed a few general hearing tests and also tested their vision.  I probably spent about 20 minutes with each patient and the questions they asked really validated some of the points I was learning. One patient and I talked about hearing via bone conduction and how that can differ from air conduction, why that matters, and what it means.  In turn, I learned the turning fork I was using to perform the test is the same type that’s used by some musicians, and it’s in the key of C (fun fact!). One patient had blood pressure that was on the higher side, and was really interested to know what all the numbers meant and what he could do to help make them lower.

Although at first, I was a little concerned about how this extra assignment was going to fit into the busy first couple weeks of the new quarter, I’m really glad it was set up as part of the course. All the patients at the clinic were really nice and appreciated the service we were providing.  For some of these folks, it may be the only health screening they have this year, so it was important to be accurate.  For me, it was a great opportunity to talk about what I was learning with patients and also really helped me get my clinical skills in order.

– Jennifer Nolan, West Campus

The halfway point: new thoughts and welcomed changes

As I finish my halfway point here at Palmer West, I have certainly gone through ebbs and flows. This includes my general energy state, my view on chiropractic philosophy, and my forecast for my near future. Some quarters I have been full of energy and enthusiasm, while others I’ve struggled to keep my energy high under the weight of the program.

My overall view on philosophy of chiropractic has also changed throughout my time here at Palmer. As I think of my future practice, I am searching for ways to take care of patients that fit with my philosophy and the philosophy of chiropractic that I have found in my time here so far. This doesn’t mean my thinking won’t change over the next year and a half, and I truly welcome the change.

-Damir Simunac, West Campus

Celebration is in order!

“I passed National Boards!”

I am half way through my 7th quarter here at Palmer West, and I have just received the news that I passed part I National Boards!

It feels like the best news I have ever received, if I am going to be honest. Taking boards along with finals last quarter–along with a 100-hour Applied Kinesiology course–was very stressful, and I found it very difficult to manage my time efficiently and not completely pull out ALL my hair. After that experience, I feel like nothing could possibly be harder. So what do I go and do? Get more involved!

I ran for and won Associated Student Government (ASG) Vice President. I am so excited to be going forward knowing that I can accomplish anything that I put my mind to. This next year is going to be full of surprises and difficulties, I am sure. But I welcome the challenges knowing that I will only be bettering myself by helping to prepare for my future.

– Courtenay Schroeder, 7th Quarter, West Campus

Campus Guides fundraiser at Applebee’s

This past Saturday, we had a great event to raise money for our West Campus Guides. We had spent the previous two weeks selling breakfast vouchers for pancakes and bacon at Applebee’s. Those folks were nice enough to open their doors three hours before they normally open to accommodate breakfast to all of the people we sold vouchers to!

It became a great inter-club competition. Guides brought out their best salesmanship skills, and it was fun selling against my fellow peers. Once at Applebee’s, we set up the entire restaurant and then served everyone who bought a voucher. We had a great turn-out of almost a hundred people!

Folks were well satisfied, and although we didn’t get enough contestants for the all-you-can eat pancake challenge, we are hoping next year that will come to fruition. All in all it was a successful event in that we raised money for our club, provided an affordable and delicious breakfast to our customers, and we got to have fun talking to people on a beautiful Saturday morning. I’m excited for next year’s event and hopefully I can sell the most tickets!

I am SO stressed! But that’s okay

Hello! My name is Courtenay, and I am almost halfway through my sixth quarter here at Palmer’s West Campus. Man, am I stressed! Midterms are hitting full force, and so is the realization that Part I boards are right around the corner (end of the quarter with finals). Trying to balance school, friends and health can be challenging, especially in times like these. However, the great thing about my class is that we are all in this together, and everyone is so supportive! It makes the endless hours of studying seem not THAT bad.

The deeper I get into the curriculum, the more I get to learn adjustments and the better I get at them–so that is honestly what is getting me through right now. Regardless of how much studying I have to do, exams I have coming up, or the fact I need a nap SO bad doesn’t deter me from practicing my adjusting skills every chance I get. Seven more quarters to go, but who’s counting right?

Chirogames!

This November, 20 Palmer West students literally traveled across the country to compete against other chiropractic schools at the Chirogames in Cocoa Beach, Florida.

We had teams playing flag football, women’s soccer and beach volleyball. The teams enjoyed playing the sports and competing on the beautiful sunny Florida coastline while being able to enjoy team sports, the warm beach and a little time away from home. It was a great opportunity to get to know new people around the school on a level outside the hallways.

Palmer West is one of the smallest chiropractic schools in the United States and had a smaller turnout than the other schools. But despite our low numbers, the teams put up a tough fight in all their games on Saturday and Sunday. The teams had a competitive mind set, but most of all wanted to go out and enjoy playing the games that they love.

The weather was hot, the food was fried and the nights were full of dancing. The nightlife in Cocoa Beach was filled with chiropractic students from across North America from both the United States and Canada, with a report of over 600 students on the small island over the weekend. This was a great opportunity to meet other chiropractic students that will one day be our colleagues.

Overall, the weekend was a blast, being able to play in the sun and compete.

Nichelle Francavilla B.S., ART, CSCS
Palmer College of Chiropractic, West Campus (9Q-Student Intern)

Here’s to a great fall quarter!

We just began the second week of fall quarter and I must say it’s crazy to think that I’ve already completed one year here. It’s true what they say about how quickly it moves. I remember back in spinal palpation lab in first quarter, thinking that I would never be able to feel the structures we were asked to find. Everyone said that after a year our skills would improve dramatically. I’m sure it’s all relative, but I would have to agree that it’s amazing how much your hands-on skills improve over the course of your first year. It’s exciting to think how much more I will improve this coming year … and then a year from now it’s clinic time!

It was fun to welcome the new first quarter class last week at various events that were going on at school, such as SPIZZ Night, the all-school Welcome Assembly and the party that the 2nd quarter class always throws for the 1st quarter class. We are no longer the largest class on campus, and we also got to move into a larger room with a window! Small victories! As a Campus Guide, it was fun to see some of the prospective students I had on tours show up as a new students this quarter.

Currently, we 5th quarters have started the frantic rush of studying for our CCEP exam in three weeks. This test is a cumulative review of the material learned in our first year here at Palmer’s West Campus. It involves 14 stations: seven practical and seven written. We will be asked to perform clinical and adjusting skills, along with being asked to do basic diagnosis of common metabolic conditions, etc. It’s kind of overwhelming but at the same fun to review the information!

There are about 10 people from my class that are taking a 100-hour certification course in Applied Kinesiology with a local chiropractor. We have six sessions this quarter and six next quarter. Our first session was great and, while it makes for a long week, it is a great way to bring in a very different aspect to what we learn in school.

As for me, cross country season is in full swing with the team I coach, and we are hoping to have our boys’ team win their league meet in two weeks and move on to state! Here’s to a great fall quarter!