July 16, 2011 — In June, another group of Northwestern Health Sciences University students wrapped up a service trip to La Clinica de la Mariposa in Costa Rica.
Northwestern has offered this service experience for the past 11 years and continues to offer it to students three times each year. While the program has primarily taken chiropractic students, it has grown to include students from the school of massage therapy. La Clinica de la Mariposa provides integrated health care to individuals and families in lower-income communities in Costa Rica.
This was the largest group of student Northwestern has ever taken to Costa Rica, and included eight chiropractic students and two massage therapy students. While two massage therapy students first participated in the Costa Rica trip last February, this was the first time the program has included both chiropractic and massage students, working alongside each other.
“We were really looking forward to the integration, says Heidi Huebscher, massage therapy student. I wanted to understand the chiropractic process and the chiropractic students were able to get a feel for the massage process,” says Huebscher.
Fellow massage therapy student Sarah Buck agrees about the integration of both massage therapy and chiropractic practices. “It was a blossoming of awareness. It was a great opportunity to develop camaraderie and see that the two disciplines can synergize,” she says. Buck loved the opportunity to give back at La Clinica. “You get so much more than you give. It’s addicting!”
Seeing the benefits that chiropractic and massage therapy can have on patients was rewarding for the students.
“Seeing patients in so much pain and coming back a few days later, pain-free was amazing to see,” says Nick Johnson, chiropractic student. “I had a patient come back with tears in her eyes she was so grateful. “You see cases you wouldn’t normally see in Minnesota,” says Ted Lillie, chiropractic student. “They just don’t have the same access to health care that we do. The patients need someone to care about them.”
The following students participated in the June service trip:
School of Massage Therapy:
- Heidi Huebscher
- Sarah Buck
College of Chiropractic:
- Brittany Baer
- Steve Hill
- Nick Johnson
- Ted Lillie
- Tim O’Neil
- Sarah Paveglio
- Blair Runde
- Miaken Zeigler
To see more information on the La Clinica de la Mariposa, click here.
Source: Northwestern Health Sciences University, www.nwhealth.edu/nwtoday/index.html