Life Chiropractic College West’s newest class of students participated in the school’s quarterly orientation program Friday. In doing so, 25 chiropractic hopefuls took the first step of their journeys at the college, ahead of the 2019 spring quarter, which kicks off Monday, April 1.
“This program is rigorous,” Dean of Enrollment Mary Lucus-Flannery said in her opening remarks. “You are going to work harder here than most of you have in your lives. What will help is the structure we’re trying to create today.”
After being welcomed to campus, the students discussed their respective roads to Life West. A number of new enrollees mentioned past chiropractic experiences that inspired them to explore studies within the field.
“I’m a success story of chiropractic,” Sophia Grandstaff remarked. “I was a mega-athlete kid, into everything, and I wore myself out really young. I was 10 or 12 when I started to see (Life West alumnus) Dr. Kristine Brew. She completely healed me, and I didn’t think that was possible.”
“Chiropractic helped get my quality of life back,” added Yasmeen Malik. “I went to a bunch of different doctors. Everyone kept telling me, ‘you’re fine, there’s nothing wrong with you.’ I went to see a chiropractor, and finally, there was someone who said, ‘I know why you’re in so much pain. I understand why you’re struggling.’ ”
Meanwhile, several other students mentioned the desire to make a real difference in the world.
“I’ve always wanted to help people,” Tim Stanfill said. “I got into personal training and dealing with shoulder and back injuries. That grew into realizing that I didn’t want to just help people get through things, I want to help people understand why things are hurting.”
“I worked in business and finance, and I hated it,” James Poppe recalled. “On paper, it was a great thing to do, but I didn’t feel like I was helping anyone.”
A number of students had direct connections to Life West that existed prior to enrollment. For example, Olivia Tanasse’s father, John, is a member of the Life West Class of 2001, and maintains a practice in Washington.
“My whole life, I went, ‘I’m not going to be a chiropractor, no way,’” she said, eliciting chuckles from her soon-to-be classmates. “Last May, three weeks before I graduated, I got an email from Mary about a President’s dinner. I went to see how it was, and I fell in love with Life West.
“The next day, I told my dad, ‘I’m going to chiropractic school!’ He never told me to go. He’s still shocked, but super happy.”
For these students, Friday marked the beginning of three-year programs designed by the college to mold confident, competent chiropractors. Dr. Lucus-Flannery preached values of self-awareness and resourcefulness, while also re-emphasizing the challenges students would face in the weeks and months ahead.
“Your introduction to being a chiropractor starts today,” she said. “Your chiropractic mindset starts now. You need to start thinking of yourself in that role and start taking on those responsibilities.”