Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Statement on Accreditation

Hello Prospective Massage Therapy Student!

We hope that you are pursuing your interest in researching local educational opportunities in the Massage Therapy field. We are posting this to clarify some information about our school that we feel is very important in order for you to make the best decision.

It has come to our attention that another local massage school has been spreading incorrect and confusing information, and we’re here to set the record straight. It is important to us that you choose the school that is the best match for your educational goals and your financial needs. We appreciate it when someone comes in having done their research, and we hope you have taken the time to visit the various schools available.

About Us:
The Oriental Healing Arts School is authorized by The Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education. This means that the State of Alaska puts our school through a rigorous and mandatory evaluation on a regular and on-going basis to ensure that we provide valid and effective vocational education.

We meet and exceed State standards on a regular basis, and have a good working relationship with the Postsecondary Education staff due to our professionalism and high standards.

Because the State has authorized our school, students are eligible to apply for state student loans. Many Native corporations also provide tuition assistance to our students, and we offer in-house financing options.

Our graduates are welcomed at City Hall when they apply for a license. No graduate of our school has ever been denied a license. As an added bonus, 91% of our graduates are currently working in the Massage Therapy field.

What exactly is accreditation and why does it matter?

Unlike Postsecondary Education Authorization, which we have, accreditation is not usually mandatory – it is voluntary. One of the main reasons that a school will choose to become accredited is that it allows students the ability to receive federal funding for tuition. This can be lucrative income to a school. It is also lucrative income to the accrediting agency who is paid by the school for their stamp of approval.

So yes, accredited schools are held to rigorous high standards, however the State of Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education also holds schools to rigorous high standards so that students are ensured a viable vocation.

The accrediting agencies spend a lot of money advertising the terms “accreditation” and “is your school accredited”. There is a degree of media hype to this, so do your homework on what this actually means to you before you blindly follow a term with a large advertising budget behind it.

The Oriental Healing Arts School of Massage Therapy is currently working with an Oriental Medicine and Acupuncture accreditation agency towards the goal of future accreditation. We are doing this because it is required for our acupuncture program, and we will do everything necessary to ensure the success of our graduates.

Massage Therapy Program Comparison:
Career Academy (Alaska Career College) offers a program that is 2 months shorter than ours and costs a little more, however you may qualify for federal funding on some or all of the tuition. Their program meets licensing requirements for basic therapeutic massage. Career Academy (Alaska Career College) also offers a large variety of vocations to choose from, and this is the main focus of their school – to provide you education that leads to a job in that field.

The Oriental Healing Arts School of Massage Therapy offers a 10-month program that costs a little less than Career Academy, and students may qualify for a state student loan or Native grant for some or all of the tuition. Our program exceeds state licensing requirements. The biggest difference is that we offer this education because we sincerely believe in Oriental medicine and natural methods of healing, and we want to move this specific information forward into our culture at large. Our instructors are passionate about this work and are also full-time professionals in the field.  We put our heart into our school and care deeply about the success of our students.

Our school also offers an abundance of related continuing education courses and programs so that a person can experience self-cultivation and growth on a very serious level not often seen in our Western culture. We treat our students like healers, and the courses that surround us show this – courses like:

Oriental Medicine Non-Needle Techniques: Auricular Therapy, Moxibustion,  Cupping, Gua Sha, Tuning Forks, Essential Oils, and Traditional Japanese Hot Stone Therapy

Medical QiGong Energy Healing

Tai Chi & QiGong for Personal Use or Certified Instructor

Tui Na Acupressure Massage

Thai Yoga Massage

Taoist Herbology

Taoist Five Element Nutrition

One thing we hear over and over again from professional massage therapists is “I WISH I had gone to your school!”

We are dedicated to the art of healing, walk our talk, and are here for the students meant to find us – those on a special path that needs to cross ours for reasons above and beyond all of us.

Bottom Line:

If you are satisfied being a basic massage therapist, are not interested in Oriental medicine, just want a job, or you need federal funds to pay for tuition, another school is your best choice. There are local options to receive a viable education and get licensed.

If you are passionate about healing, Oriental medicine, the powerful aspects of bodywork that go beyond “just massage”, and you must do this in your life, then The Oriental Healing Arts School of Massage Therapy is your best choice. You will receive a life-changing experience that is more deep and meaningful than you can imagine, it will be exactly what you were looking for - and you can get licensed.

The Oriental Healing Arts School of Massage Therapy


Anchorage Resident said...

Although I did not study therapeutic massage, I have studied Tai Chi at the Center. I have also had therapeutic massages there more than once. All I can say, as a student, I found the classes and instructions, as well as Shifu and his staff of instructors, to be extremely knowledgeable and professional. There is a difference between a masseuse (massage that is taught at Career Academy) and a massage therapist (therapeutic massage taught at the Oriental Healing Arts Center. If I want to pamper myself because I'm self-centered I would go to a local spa and get pampered by a masseuse. But if I have a legitimate illness or physical pain that requires someone who understands the anatomy and the healing arts, I go to the the Oriental Healing Arts Center for a therapeutic massage. There just isn't any other decision that I would make; I'd go to the Center. Its a waste of money to go to a spa just because I want to be pampered. I find other ways that I can pamper myself without spending a lot of money on an expensive massage that doesn't do me any good.

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