By Dana Fine, LAc, PCOM-Chicago Alumna
When I decided to look into graduate school programs I was shocked to learn that almost all of them are four years. It seemed very long but I thought to myself, if I am going to do this I have to do it now, so I applied. I was a journalist before going back to school, and I knew I could always write but with a masters, I would have an even stronger focus to my writing. I was really excited and ready to go, and during the summer of 2009, I found out that I was accepted to Pacific College of Oriental Medicine in Chicago. It seemed like the perfect school for me.
All summer long I prepared by reading books about Chinese Medicine but nothing prepared me for the beginning. I did not know that I was essentially learning a brand new language, culture, and a completely new way of thinking. I also forgot what it was like to start somewhere new, without any friends or acquaintances in sight. My only choice was to put on a strong front until I made it to my car to call my mom and cry. I cried that first day, same with the second but it was that third day when everything changed. On my third day of school, I made a friend. She was and will always be my angel in graduate school. I was having trouble remembering a definition in medical terminology, and she turned to me and said something funny to me to help me remember the definition. That one friend helped me relax a little, and after that school started to become much easier for me.