Clinical Herbalism, Therapeutic Herbalism, and Health & Wellness Coaching
“With a background in the sciences and a reverence for the ancient traditions of the world, MUIH’s approach of integrating ancient wisdom with modern science was exactly what I was looking for.”
What drew you to MUIH?
I was looking for a way to deepen my knowledge about herbs through mentorship by experienced herbalists. Someone recommended MUIH and the therapeutic herbalism program totally fit the bill, plus more! It seemed to be quite comprehensive, rigorous, and reputable. MUIH’s creative and experiential approach to learning suited my visual and hands-on learning style, and the faculty were experts in the field with decades of experience.
As an institution, MUIH's mission was aligned with where life seemed to be taking me and their values aligned with what I was striving to embody as a person. With a background in the sciences and a reverence for the ancient traditions of the world, their approach of integrating ancient wisdom with modern science was exactly what I was looking for.
Furthermore, their teachings were inclusive and mutually respectful of both the traditional and modern perspectives, seeing both as valid and valuable in today's world. Their emphasis on self-reflection and self-discovery indicated to me that they viewed personal growth and development as being as important as the technical subject matter of herbal medicine. And lastly, it seemed like MUIH provided the closest thing to a direct teacher-student method of learning, which was the hallmark of ancient educational approaches.
What excited you about your academic field?
I love this question. It gets me fired up! Humans have relied on botanicals’ powerful healing capabilities to help maintain our health and wellness for thousands of years. I never understood why they were considered so powerful with respect to healing and didn't completely believe it. It was a mystery to me. However, deep down inside for the longest time there was a subtle sense of curiosity that kept telling me to explore and learn about botanicals to see what all the hype was about. And so I did and the adventure has been quite amazing!
Another huge aspect is that botanicals are not owned or controlled by any one culture, country, company, individual or group—that’s powerful and a true example of freedom. On top of that, herbal traditions and systems can be developed, evolved, built upon, and practiced by anyone—the poor, rich, young, and old. They are open and accessible to all. This allows for unlimited creative possibilities, allowing the field to evolve in many different directions, wherever individuals in the field would like to take things. And so I feel it’s quite honorable to help support, provide services, teach, and build awareness around such a viable grassroots bottom-up healthcare option. One that is affordable to all, decentralized, free from singular control and straight from Mother Nature! It totally resonates with my values and my view of the type of world I'd like to live in.
Has there been a course you’ve particularly enjoyed?
This is a tough one, as every single course has been quite fascinating! If I had to pick one, it'd be “Fundamentals of Herbal Medicine: Past to Present, Soil to Clinic." That course really opened up my eyes to the elegance, power, and potential of using botanicals therapeutically. I learned how the art and science of herbal medicine can be as simple as drinking a cup of coffee to get you going in the morning. Or it could be as complex as following a custom formulated herbal treatment protocol designed to help your body correct any one of a variety of chronic imbalances. It was quite mind-blowing for me and totally deepened my drive to learn more!
Can you speak about the faculty here?
They bring years of experience in the field to the classroom, are passionate about the subject matter, are excited to share their wisdom, and are incredibly inspiring! What is really amazing is that all of them are approachable and actually care whether you are truly learning the material, which from my experience isn't always the case at higher education institutions.
What’s your best MUIH memory?
The best memory isn't a single event or moment that occurred. It’s actually happened many times and will happen many times again in the future. It’s always when I leave Sunday evening after a jam-packed weekend full of classes. I leave inspired ready to take on the world, more inspired to learn about botanicals, health and wellness, more excited about the future and what lies ahead. To me that’s quite a good sign, that I'm where I need to be. I think that’s a pretty nice set of memories to have!
How will you use what you’ve learned here?
There are a variety of ways I'd love to take my knowledge forward! I hope to practice clinically, using botanicals to provide another avenue towards wellness for the benefit of society, the public, my friends, family, and myself. I feel it’s essential that I teach and share my knowledge in whatever capacity possible, so I can contribute back to the community, as others took the opportunity to do for me. I've been dabbling in various design disciplines since I was kid, so I'd like to combine that passion with my new knowledge about botanicals to design unique herbal products. Along the way I want to make sure I'm growing botanicals and connecting with them in their environment.
On a foundational level, the approach to studying herbs that I've learned has given me a solid set of tools and a conceptual framework that I will definitely be using to further deepen and expand my knowledge about botanicals and their therapeutic uses. I hope to continue exploring the traditional and modern perspectives on health and wellness, using the broad conceptual understanding that I've picked up at MUIH to further explore other traditional healing systems.
On a personal level, I will most definitely keep practicing the positive and healing "ways of being" we were taught, weaving it through my life journey well beyond my time at MUIH.
What would you say about MUIH to a prospective student who is interested in attending?
What I find quite unique and amazing about MUIH is that most everyone who is a student here came to MUIH as if it were part of a calling in their lives. After getting to know them, you soon realize that each one has had quite an interesting set of life experiences that brought them to MUIH. It wasn't simply to get a degree or training so they can get a job to earn a living. It seems to be much deeper than that. And so there is a supportive community where you meet like-minded people that you can really connect with. A place that you can come to for constant inspiration about all the possibilities in life. I'd totally recommend MUIH and already have many times.
What is the one word that comes to mind when you think of MUIH?