Student Highlight: Armed Forces to Holistic Business Owner

Erin Crawford is a student in the AAS in Complementary Alternative Medicine program and is the owner of Neesta’s Holistic Alternatives.

Choosing Wellness

After becoming injured while serving in the Army, Erin’s eyes were first opened to the possibilities of holistic health. “I started having to get care for certain issues and injuries that I had suffered in the Army and they overmedicated me and I almost died at one point,” she says. After this, Erin started doing small things to try and lead a healthier lifestyle for her and her family.

“In the process, I started growing my own food and raising things around my farm that were better for us and started getting interested in growing herbs,” Erin says. She researched herbs online and was able to find lots of information about the benefits, but not much about cautions or safety.

Erin decided that if she was really going to be able to use what she learned about herbs, she wanted to do it the right way. “That’s when I started looking for a school,” she says.

Getting an Education With Veteran’s Funding

Before going to ACHS, Erin wanted to become a hairstylist but then she discovered that she had an interest in learning more about herbs. She was able to use Veteran’s Funding for her education at ACHS. For anyone interested in using military funding for education, you can learn more about Veteran’s Education Benefits here.

Erin says that she appreciatess the flexibility that online education can offer. “I almost feel like there was more support going online than if I had gone to a brick-and-mortar school,” she says.

Erin recommends really listening to your Student Services advisor once you are a student. “One of the problems that I had was that I gave myself too much of a break. I felt like I wasn’t qualified enough because I didn’t follow through. I know my subject matter and am really good at what I do, but I held myself back because I didn’t push myself through that part that was the hardest bridge to cross at that point,” she says. “My advisor Joel has been basically the only voice of reason that I’ve had as far as the education goes. I guess if I had listened to him better and pushed myself like he was trying to tell me to do, I wouldn’t have had some of the downsides I had.” 

Now that her break is over, Erin is excited to be completing the last semester of her program this summer.

Starting a Business

Erin started her business unofficially in 2018. She began making holistic products while doing a fundraiser for a service dog, and people responded well to the products. “My fundraiser turned into a lot of people really enjoying what I had. I thought I should just keep going,” she says.

During the pandemic, Erin took the leap and opened a storefront. She says, “In the middle of a pandemic I decided to open a brick and mortar. I feel like it gives me an opportunity to touch bases with the community a bit better. People who don’t want to necessarily get an education in herbalism but want to do something that’s better for themselves.”

In her town in Alabama, there is limited access to herbal knowledge. Her store, Neesta’s Holistic Alternatives, helps to fill that gap and provide the community with resources, including herbal products and educational classes.

Inside The Store

“One of the features of my store is I am encouraging people to bring in their own packaging to get a refill on their products,” Erin says. She also provides free consultations to anyone who wants to live more holistically. “ I can give them a holistic view of what they can do in their lives, whether that be meditation, or aromatherapy, or herbs,” she says. These consultations are her favorite part of her job.

Erin offers a variety of holistic products in her store. “My absolute most favorite and one that I use the most is my arthritis cream. A lot of people use ointments and salves but this one is a cream so it’s a lighter product that doesn’t have a strong smell,” she says.

One of Erin’s future goals is to open a cafe within her store that features healthy alternatives for the community. “For example, one of my menu offerings is a beetroot latte. It sounds scary to some people but in reality with the natural ingredients that are in it, not only is it going to be good for you but it will also be something that people are going to want to come back for,” she says.

How To Overcome Fears In Starting A Business

After experiencing and overcoming her own setbacks while creating her business, here is Erin’s advice:

  1. Develop a business plan. “A business plan is essential. By business plan I don’t mean something you write and ignore or write and stick adamantly to, it’s got to be something that’s a living breathing document.”
  2. Use what you learn in school. “Think about your best subjects, and use what you learned about stress management.”
  3. Keep going. “If they feel like there’s nothing but obstacles, stop looking at the obstacles and start looking at the things you can pick up to get over those obstacles.”

 

In addition to serving the community through Neesta’s Holistic Alternatives, Erin is also planning on continuing her education to become a nurse practitioner specializing in holistic medicine.

Follow along with Erin:

Written by Gillian Turner for the American College of Healthcare Sciences

Earn an Accredited Online Degree in Herbal Studies. Click here to learn more.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I am the social media & PR specialist for the American College of Healthcare Sciences, the Institution that publishes this blog. However, all opinions are my own. This blog may contain affiliate links. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent disease. This article has not been reviewed by the FDA. Always consult with your primary care physician or naturopathic doctor before making any significant changes to your health and wellness routine.

About American College of Healthcare Sciences

American College founded in 1978, is a fully online accredited institute of higher education specializing in holistic health. Based in Portland, OR; our goal is to make research-driven and science-based holistic health education taught by industry-leading experts accessible to anyone anywhere while still giving students a hands-on experiential learning experience like a traditional college and a strong sense of community, school pride and student bond.

This commitment to our students and graduates reflects in our current survey results that reflect 98% of our students would recommend ACHS to a friend or family member.

We believe education is the most powerful tool for changing an individual and the world around us.

When a person enrolls as ACHS, it is vitally important that they graduate with tools they need to forge their own holistic and sustainable missions, build up their communities confidently and changing the face of healthcare with knowledge.

The post Student Highlight: Armed Forces to Holistic Business Owner appeared first on American College of Healthcare Sciences.

from American College of Healthcare Sciences https://achs.edu/blog/2021/04/09/student-highlight-erin-crawford/
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Benefits of Writing a Quality Research Paper

Contributed by ACHS alumni Melissa Abbott, MS, CPT, NC

Why It’s Important?

You have just been informed that you’re going to write a research paper and you have no idea how you are going to start the writing process. You may even doubt that you can take on such a challenge. I’m here today to say YES you absolutely can do this! The following writing tips and support strategies offered below are important incentives and motivations involved in the writing process, for your career, and future goals. The writing process involves your body, mind, and spirit. It is all included because you put all your energy and immerse your whole being into it.

Here’s the exciting part, can you imagine having your paper being read by several hundred maybe even thousands of other academic professionals, researchers, and scientists from around the world? It is one of the most incredible feelings to achieve a status of recognition from your hard work in research and the passion(s) you have in holistic health from your peers. Scientists, doctors, holistic professionals in every domain, researchers, collaborators looking for you, your knowledge, and expertise. Sound too good to be true, nope, it happened to me and I hope that it can happen for you too!

Spiral notebook and ballpoint pen on a table

The significant impact and support that I received in my first class at ACHS, RES501: Assessment and Integration of Research Online, with Professor Dr. Nicole Betschman, was empowering. Dr. Betschman armed and mentored us with the best skills and writing techniques, coping strategies for our anxiety and doubts, and outlines to produce quality research and writing. However, she said one thing that stuck out in my mind throughout my studies at ACHS, register with an online platform where you can post your papers for others to read and get yourself noticed in your chosen field of interest. I did just that and since posting my very first paper to ResearchGate (researchgate.com), it has garnered over 1,000+ reads from others in my area of concentration who have emailed me to ask me questions, inquire about my future projects, and offers of potential future collaborations.

Listed below are just a few of the many benefits to writing a quality research paper:

  1. Recognition from peers in your field of work for all your hard work and showing pride for your academic institution.
  2. Collaboration with others in your field of expertise from around the world and the potential for research jobs or job recruitment offers.
  3. Opportunities for growing your business and career while contributing and supporting your field of interest.
  4. A showcase of your accomplishments and research papers on your resume or curriculum vitae that highlights your chosen area of expertise to potential employers, clinical trials, and research collaborations.

Woman typing on computer with notebook next to her

How to start the writing process?

You may be asking yourself … where do I begin, how do I pick a topic, what do I research? Let me help by offering a few strategies or “tools” for your writing “toolbox” to get you in the headspace to explore these brainstorming questions.

1. Sit comfortably with a notebook, make a cup of tea, turn on a diffuser with a blend that promotes increased focus and cognitive awareness, put on some background music, create a space for exploration with little to no distraction, and remember to take several deep breaths during your research sessions. We tend to hold our breath when we’re deep in the research and writing process. This always helps refocus the brainstorming process as well as reduce your stress and anxiety accumulating in your body, mind, and spirit. I do understand these feelings and they can distract you from your best intentions.

2. I highly recommend that you pick a topic and formulate your hypothesis on something you already know well, or an area of interest that supports your future career goals, or on a health condition a friend, family, or that you are challenged with; this is a great place to start. My first paper that received all the recognition came from years of personal experience which made the writing process so much easier. This takes so much of the anxiety away from picking a topic at random. If you are invested in the subject you will want to produce a quality paper with integrity that resulted from years of your experiences and knowledge. You are worth it!

3. Time management is key to staying on task and your module assignments in class. I recommend blocking out two-hour intervals on your research then take a break, walk away, go outside, stretch, go for a walk, get a snack. This also permits you to do other things without getting anxious that you haven’t finished other tasks or responsibilities. These intermissions create more space to return with fresh eyes, mindset, and less tension in your body from sitting. Or even better yet, use a standing desk!

4. Creating a few folders; one on your desktop and one in your bookmarks, where you will collect and manage the content for each component of your research paper helps with the organization of each of the sections involved in a scholarly research paper. Then you can add multiple subfolders for each part of the paper. For example, I had a folder entitled, RES501 Thesis, then subfolders entitled Introduction, Methods, Discussion, Results, and Conclusions. I had one folder titled Notes so that I could cut and paste notes from the highlights taken from research articles and journals that help me to formulate my findings, data interpretations, and key points. One last thing that helped was keeping a file titled Books/Citations so they are all in one place and you don’t have to go looking for them afterward. Another way to decrease your anxiety and stress!

5. I also recommend creating two bookmarks to collect all the supportive websites, journals, and resource materials so you don’t have to look for them each time you need them. For example, I had one bookmark entitled, Research Platforms, where I had links to PubMed, Elsevier, Google Scholar, LIRN, Oxford, and BMC. Then I had a second one entitled, Writing Tools, where I had American Psychological Association (APA) publication manual, Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL), and citation checkers such as Citation Machine and Cite This For Me.

Shelf of library books

Keep all your supportive tools at your fingertips. Use highlights of different colors to capture the key points within the articles and journals you collect so you are less likely to forget where you read specific data to support your hypothesis. More importantly, it is my hope these tools and tips from personal experiences help support you on your writing adventure and the journey your academic career takes you. It is a very exciting time and it brings great opportunities for success, increased confidence, and empowers you to continue working hard at what you love.

When you find yourself in a writing slump, feel your anxiety increasing or you’re just having a bad day, it is okay to ask for help and support from your fellow peers, your professors, your home support team, they all want you to succeed. I want you to succeed and if you would like to discuss some strategies or need help from a fellow researcher please don’t hesitate to reach out and email me. I would be thrilled to help you produce the best paper you can while being true to yourself and your vision. Be well and happy writing!

Kindly,

Melissa Abbott

Earn an Accredited Online Degree. Click here to learn more.

References:
[1] American Psychological Association (APA), (2021). Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (7th ed.). Retrieved from https:// apastyle.apa.org/products/publication-manual-7th-edition
[2] Citation Machine® – write smarter. (n.d.). Retrieved April 02, 2021, from https://www.citationmachine.net/
[3] Save time and improve your marks With CITETHISFORME, the No. 1 citation tool. (n.d.). Retrieved April 02, 2021, from https://www.citethisforme.com/
[4] Purdue Writing Lab. (n.d.). Purdue owl // Purdue Writing lab. Retrieved April 02, 2021, from https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/purdue_owl.html

Author Bio

Melissa Abbott received her Master of Science degree in Complementary Alternative Medicine at ACHS, August of 2020. She started her own holistic nutrition and wellness business to support others in their pursuit of optimum wellness. Her primary mission is to support others in their journey to finding resilience from psychoneuroimmunological (PNI) injury from early childhood maltreatment, stress, and trauma.

Contact info: Resilient RootZ Wellness, LLC.
abbotts@atlanticBB.net
melissa.abbott@achs.edu
@resilient.rootz

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent disease. This article has not been reviewed by the FDA. Always consult with your primary care physician or naturopathic doctor before making any significant changes to your health and wellness routine.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I am an alumni American College of Healthcare Sciences, the Institution that publishes this blog. However, all opinions are my own. This blog may contain affiliate links. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

About American College of Healthcare Sciences

American College founded in 1978, is a fully online accredited institute of higher education specializing in holistic health. Based in Portland, OR; our goal is to make research-driven and science-based holistic health education taught by industry-leading experts accessible to anyone anywhere while still giving students a hands-on experiential learning experience like a traditional college and a strong sense of community, school pride and student bond.

This commitment to our students and graduates reflects in our current survey results that reflect 98% of our students would recommend ACHS to a friend or family member.

We believe education is the most powerful tool for changing an individual and the world around us.

When a person enrolls as ACHS, it is vitally important that they graduate with tools they need to forge their own holistic and sustainable missions, build up their communities confidently and changing the face of healthcare with knowledge.

The post Benefits of Writing a Quality Research Paper appeared first on American College of Healthcare Sciences.

from American College of Healthcare Sciences https://achs.edu/blog/2021/04/02/writing-quality-research-paper/
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Alumni Highlight: Happy Health Naturally

Michelle Kolcan graduated from ACHS in 2020 with an AAS in Complementary Alternative Medicine and a specialization in herbalism. She opened her business, Happy Health Naturally, right after graduating.

Growing Up Holistic

Michelle grew up in a family that used natural health and nutrition to stay healthy. “I think that that background gave me faith in the good in doing things naturally,” she says. After spending much of her career in the restaurant industry and then working with plants at a garden center, her interest in a career in holistic health was jump-started when she attended a chiropractic seminar.

“I was invited out of the blue by a friend, they had extra tickets,” Michelle says. “That seminar changed my life. I realized what a chiropractor could do for people even with major illnesses.” She started school to become a chiropractor, but due to time constraints and other responsibilities, she was unable to complete it. At this point, Michelle turned toward her second passion: natural medicine.

Pictured: Michelle’s Awakening Face and Neck Day Cream

Online Education

“I started going online for schools,” Michelle says. “I saw that ACHS had been around for over 40 years, was run by a president who was very active and still in the process of teaching and learning and traveling and really being a practicer of what was preached. Also saw that I could transfer some credits from the school that I had already started.”

Michelle enjoyed the flexibility that online school offers.“I loved the fact that if I had other things going on, I could simply do things at whatever times worked best for me,” she says. “I liked the fact that you could save money getting the eBooks instead of the printed books.”

“Starting school is not as hard as you would think,” she says. “I took years before even starting. But ACHS has such helpful staff that can easily walk you through every part of it and it’s a lot less involved than you would think. And affordable with financial aid.”

As she went to school at ACHS, Michelle had already been making plans for her business and she opened it the same month that she graduated. “I had already been thinking about my business name and already knew that I wanted to do wellness consults about holistic health and my specialization was in herbalism,” she says.

Pictured: Happy Health Naturally logo

Happy Health Naturally

Michelle opened Happy Health Naturally in August of 2020. She offers over the phone and in-person wellness consults. She also offers personally made health and beauty products with Organic ingredients, herbal products and tea blends, and food shopping assistance. Her favorite part of her business is hearing people say that they feel better after such a short amount of time. “When you hear it from more than one person, it’s just such a great feeling and it makes all of my efforts worthwhile,” she says.

Pictured: Michelle’s “Caring Cypress” Bath Salts

Michelle started her business during the COVID-19 pandemic and has yet to experience running a business post-pandemic.“Since I had just started my business, it’s hard for me to gauge a difference with the COVID situation,” she says. “My guess would be one reason that it’s been slow is that people are afraid to spend their money when they’re out of work.”

Pictured: Happy Health Naturally product display

Lessons Learned From Opening a Business

These are a few of the valuable lessons that Michelle learned from opening a business:

  • Don’t be afraid to start. “Becoming successful is a combination of many little efforts. You can’t get down a pathway unless you take the first step. It can be slow, but don’t give up.”
  • Talk positively to yourself. “Push negative thoughts out of your head right away.”
  • Keep up with research. “Remember that even the best doctors out there still have to do research and they keep up with new research. Don’t become complacent, and don’t feel so bad if you’ve forgotten a lot of what you learned in school.”
  • Be sincere and show you care. “If you want to become successful with people, it’s important that they see your sincerity and your friendliness. Don’t be afraid to share things in a way that they would understand. You don’t have to talk in medical terms for them to believe that you know what you’re talking about.”

Want to study Holistic Nutrition? Click here to learn more.

Written by Gillian Turner for the American College of Healthcare Sciences

Disclosure of Material Connection: I am the social media & PR specialist for the American College of Healthcare Sciences, the Institution that publishes this blog. However, all opinions are my own. This blog may contain affiliate links. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent disease. This article has not been reviewed by the FDA. Always consult with your primary care physician or naturopathic doctor before making any significant changes to your health and wellness routine.

About American College of Healthcare Sciences

Students with DoreneAmerican College, founded in 1978, is a fully online accredited institute of higher education specializing in holistic health. Based in Portland, OR; our goal is to make research-driven and science-based holistic health education taught by industry-leading experts accessible to anyone anywhere while still giving students a hands-on experiential learning experience like a traditional college and a strong sense of community, school pride and student bond.

This commitment to our students and graduates reflects in our current survey results that reflect 98% of our students would recommend ACHS to a friend or family member.

We believe education is the most powerful tool for changing an individual and the world around us.

When a person enrolls as ACHS, it is vitally important that they graduate with tools they need to forge their own holistic and sustainable missions, build up their communities confidently and changing the face of healthcare with knowledge.

The post Alumni Highlight: Happy Health Naturally appeared first on American College of Healthcare Sciences.

from American College of Healthcare Sciences https://achs.edu/blog/2021/03/26/alumni-highlight-michelle-kolcan/
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Alumni Highlight: Chemistry Of Essential Oils | achs.edu

 

Geetanjali Ranade graduated from ACHS in 2000 with a Certificate in Aromatherapy. She holds a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology and is a Registered Medical Practitioner. She also practices Reiki and completed her postdoctoral research in Japan on brain angiogenesis. She has had papers in many different publications and has been working from 2000 onwards in the perfume industry.

from ACHS Holistic Health and Wellness Blog https://info.achs.edu/blog/alumni-highlight-geetanjali-ranade
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How To Get The Most Out Of Working From Home | achs.edu

Right around this time last March is when the ACHS staff transitioned from working in the office to working from our homes full time. After a year of working out of our homes during a global pandemic, here are some tips to we picked up on how to get the most out of your work-from-home experience. Even if you are heading back into the office, these tips can still benefit you.

from ACHS Holistic Health and Wellness Blog https://info.achs.edu/blog/work-from-home-tips
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How To Get The Most Out Of Working From Home | achs.edu

Right around this time last March is when the ACHS staff transitioned from working in the office to working from our homes full time. After a year of working out of our homes during a global pandemic, here are some tips to we picked up on how to get the most out of your work-from-home experience. Even if you are heading back into the office, these tips can still benefit you.

from ACHS Holistic Health and Wellness Blog https://info.achs.edu/blog/work-from-home-tips
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Celebrating Black ACHS Students and Graduates | achs.edu

To celebrate Black excellence, we are sharing highlights of some of our amazing Black ACHS students and alumni that have been featured on the blog in the last year. It is incredibly fulfilling to watch our students succeed and become flourishing holistic health professionals. To read the full feature for each of these amazing individuals, just click the link below each of their photos.

from ACHS Holistic Health and Wellness Blog http://info.achs.edu/blog/celebrating-black-students
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Celebrating Black ACHS Students and Graduates | achs.edu

To celebrate Black excellence, we are sharing highlights of some of our amazing Black ACHS students and alumni that have been featured on the blog in the last year. It is incredibly fulfilling to watch our students succeed and become flourishing holistic health professionals. To read the full feature for each of these amazing individuals, just click the link below each of their photos.

from ACHS Holistic Health and Wellness Blog https://info.achs.edu/blog/celebrating-black-students
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Tips From Successful Wellness Professionals | Part 2 | achs.edu

In Tips from Successful Wellness Professionals Part 1, we shared some valuable advice from our holistic health students and graduates. In part 2, we are sharing tips from even more of our amazing students and graduates! These are things that they learned through their own experiences in starting holistic health businesses and we hope it helps you in your own journey.

from ACHS Holistic Health and Wellness Blog https://info.achs.edu/blog/wellness-professionals-advice-2
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5 Black Holistic Wellness Leaders To Know | achs.edu

Dr. Nicole Betschman, ACHS Professor and Integrative Health and Wellness Chair, honored the achievements of Black scientists and scholars throughout STEM history while also discussing those who are currently making moves in our Black History Month webinar. She also spoke about people who are currently making a difference in the holistic wellness field, and we want to highlight them here on the blog. You can watch Nicole’s webinar and our full list of recorded free holistic health webinars here.

from ACHS Holistic Health and Wellness Blog https://info.achs.edu/blog/black-leaders-holistic-wellness
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