Student Ambassador Xavier Crawford (left)
Hometown: Xavier is from Watts, but he moved to the Bay Area for school. “The Bay Area has a good combination of lifestyles. You can go to San Francisco where it’s more fast-paced, and there are also spots in the Bay Area like Hayward and San Leandro where it’s kind of country-esque. I like that duality.”
What was your first experience with chiropractic?
“I came to chiropractic through Dr. Sean Drake. He’s former faculty at Life West. I was in my last year of my athletic training degree at Cal State Northridge. I was working the Long Beach Mountain Dew Tour and Dr. Drake was our medical director. When I met him, I was considering a master’s in sports psychology or PT school. Chiropractic was the last option on my list. He convinced me to go into chiropractic within two hours. I’m really care-centric, and he explained everything I could do. Athletic trainers are considered doctors on the field, but with chiropractic he told me I could give my patients even more care and take more responsibility. That same day, Dr. Drake gave me my first adjustment and it was like the lights had been turned on.”
How do you approach being a peer mentor?
“I’m no better than my peers, so for me it’s like ‘iron sharpens iron.’ I see them as a colleague: I want to bring them up to where I am, and that person brings me up to their pace. I have holes where my peers are solid, and they have holes and I’m solid in those places. It’s learning together. It’s a fun experience because you get to watch someone grow intellectually, which is really beautiful.”
What do you look for in your own mentors?
“The ability to spread my wings. Pure expression. I look for someone who’s there for the patient.”
What do you like about being a student ambassador?
“It’s an honor to be an ambassador. Being a black student, I came up for Champions Weekend to see if I could see myself here. The campus is very multicultural. There are flags from students of every country who has graced our campus. But as far as seeing students who looked like me, it was slim to none. I had the fortunate opportunity to meet a student ambassador by the name of Dahren Doss, and he was the first black student I saw on campus. He helped me feel it was cool to be here, rather than feeling like I’m the only black student in a sea of white faces — now you have someone here and there are all kinds of other students. That put the charge on me, because I love to look out for the next generation. It made me feel like this is a place that’s welcoming and warm. It made me want to give that same experience to others.”