I’m nearing one of the greatest accomplishments of my life. This June I will complete my doctoral degree in physical therapy. Looking back, there have been many things that have been stepping stones towards this career choice and great accomplishment. Probably the most important step towards realizing my ability to help people with physical challenges and pain has been my experience at The New Mexico School of Natural Therapeutics.
I graduated with a bachelors degree in both dance and theater from Skidmore College in 2004. Dance had been and continues to be my passion in life, but I soon found out that making a career of it was not so easy. I spent three years post grad training, performing and auditioning in New York City and working as a waitress to make ends meet. It wasn’t long before I knew that something needed to change. I wanted to find work doing something I loved, something I was good at and most importantly something that offered job security. In 2007 I returned home to New Mexico. Within 1 month I was introduced to the New Mexico School of Natural Therapeutics and a few days later I enrolled. The next six months of this program was a whirlwind of new insight on how to manage pain, sickness and stress. Learning natural ways to not only feel better myself but also to be able to help others changed my outlook on healing forever. This school opened my mind and allowed me to develop ways in which to cope with life’s challenges naturally and also allowed me to discover how much human touch can truly change someone’s experience and pain. Through this school I developed excellent skills, confidence and a passion for helping people.
In the midst of my education I knew that I wanted to further my knowledge and somehow combine my two passions. I wondered how I could integrate my background of dance and movement with my new skills in massage therapy and natural healing modalities. It was then that i decided on researching physical therapy. I soon realized this would be the perfect career choice to fulfill me professionally and to provide me with job stability. Straight out of school I got my first job as a massage therapist in a physical therapy clinic. I spent the next two years working there, maintaining a small private practice at home and taking all the prerequisites to apply to UNM’s physical therapy doctoral program. Through hard work, passion and dedication I have excelled in the physical therapy program and am so looking forward to starting this career. I am blessed to have chosen a profession in which I can spend time with my patients and help them to work towards greater health and fitness. I think that my background in massage has greatly enhanced my manual therapy skills and has greatly enhanced my patient skills. I am thankful that NMSNT helped to lead me on this path and will forever be grateful to the teachers and fellow students that helped me along the way.
Kristin Lucero, LMT, NTS
Class of 2007