Chaminade University students Vanessa Ignacio, Dexter Manglicmot and Adam Perez have set their eyes on becoming medical doctors. So, when offered the opportunity by the Office of Health Professions Advising and Undergraduate Research (OHPAUR) to tour the world’s oldest college of osteopathic medicine, they enthusiastically went for it.
Accompanied by OHPAUR advisor Amber Caracol Noguchi, Ph.D., the students made the 4,000-mile trek March 22-26 to A.T. Still University Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine (KCOM) in Missouri. Known for its rigorous studies to engage biomedical research and its cutting edge healthcare delivery program, ATSU/KCOM has a legacy that stretches back to 1892 when Andrew Taylor Still, M.D., D. O, founded the American School of Osteopathy in Kirksville, Missouri.
KCOM staff and faculty generously gave of their time and energy to the Chaminade students, and the Chaminade students appreciated it. “This trip was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and the amount of accommodation we received from the staff showed how much they care for individuals,” said Ignacio. “I was able to speak one-on-one with an admissions counselor and really go over the details concerning my application to the school.”
The students received overviews and demonstrations in a myriad of laboratories, including osteopathic skills, anatomy, ultrasound, and simulation skills laboratories throughout the campus. ATSU KCOM student ambassador and Chaminade alum Ryan Santos ’13 (BS Biology) helped answer the students’ questions and showed them around campus.
Manglicmot’s interest was piqued by the demonstration of the manipulations of osteopathic medicine. “I did a little research and learned that manipulation is a modern diagnostic test of illness and injury called osteopathic manipulative medicine (OMM). This hands-on care involves stretching, pressure, and resistance of the muscles and joints, a holistic healthcare approach that considers a patient’s medical history, lifestyle, emotional, and mental health. Ultimately, it acknowledges the mind, body, and spirit of the patient,” Manglicmot explained with fascination.
For Perez, it was the anatomy lab. “It was beautiful to see their anatomy lab and see how the school goes through great measures to accommodate for the cadavers. It says a lot when you take care of people like that, even if they are dead…It was probably one of the best anatomy labs with the ventilation system and their practice of trying not to use too many chemicals,” he said.
The trip opened the eyes of the Chaminade students to the possibilities and the challenges of medical school and provided wisdom for accomplishing their goals. All three students thought of KCOM as somewhere they would like to attend for medical school. “After this visit, I can firmly say that A.T. Still University–Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine is my first choice for medical school,” Ignacio said.
The Office of Health Professions Advising and Undergraduate Research (OHPAUR) assists students interested in healthcare careers, regardless of their major. Services include: advising, test preparation, summer programs, guest speaker presentations, professional seminars, community service activities and internship/shadowing opportunities. OHPAUR also maintains articulation agreements with four ATSU campuses, as well as Boston University School of Medicine, George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Pacific University, Samuel Merritt University, Tufts University School of Dental Medicine, University of Dayton and Western University School of Health Sciences.