Thirty-seven students from around the world received the doctor of chiropractic degree from Sherman College of Chiropractic in Spartanburg, SC, on Saturday, December 13, 2014. The commencement was a shared ceremony for December 2014 and March 2015 graduates.
Donnie W. Miller of South Carolina, recipient of the Milton W. Garfunkel Award for the December class, and Brynne Lea Gingras of New Hampshire, recipient for the March class, presented farewell addresses to their classmates. The Garfunkel Award is the highest award given at graduation. Students receiving this honor must have a grade point average of 3.5 or above, and in addition, best exemplify those qualities Sherman College would like to inculcate in all of its graduates: love of the profession, an understanding of the philosophy, willingness to share, and service to the college and community.
Andrew Robert Schneider of Michigan and Mark Babinski of Illinois received the Academic Achievement Award. The Academic Achievement Award is given to the individual in each graduating class who maintains the highest grade point average throughout his or her studies at Sherman College.
Wendy Wright Parker of North Carolina was presented with the Service Distinction Award. This distinction is not given at every graduation; rather it is given to students who stand out for their significant and distinguished service contributions to Sherman College and the local community throughout their course of study.
The Clinical Excellence Award was presented to Rhea Dakotah Conley of South Carolina and Kara Babinski of Illinois in recognition of their successful practices in the Health Center. This award is given to an intern in each class who has diligently worked to develop skills in the art, science and philosophy of chiropractic, maintained an “A” average in the clinical program and exhibited superior overall clinical performance and professionalism.
Brynne Lea Gingras of New Hampshire and Jared James Dreckman of Iowa received the B.J. Palmer Philosophy Distinction Award. This honor is given to outstanding students who exemplify the profound philosophical understanding necessary to translate the universal principles of life into the workable philosophy, science and art which is chiropractic.
Also during the ceremony, chiropractic advocate Miguel Hastings was presented with the honorary Doctor of Chiropractic Humanities degree, a rare honor given by the college to noteworthy individuals.
The commencement address was given by Jennifer Grower York, M.S., D.C., a 2009 graduate and assistant professor of clinical sciences at Sherman College. The Fulton, NY, native holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Alfred University (1996) and a master’s degree in packaging science from Clemson University (2001) and has been on the Sherman College faculty since 2007. She teaches Neuropathophysiology, Ortho-Neuro and Clinical Diagnosis and Research, and she is also an assistant case doctor in the college’s on-campus Chiropractic Health Center. Her academic interests include chiropractic neurology, clinical diagnosis, case management, and research design. York currently serves as first vice president of the Sherman College Alumni Association.
Matthew Hudson, D.C., a 2006 Sherman College graduate and case doctor in the Chiropractic Health Center at the college, delivered the charge to the graduates. Hudson holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Virginia Tech (2001). Following his graduation from Sherman College, he was in private practice from 2007-2013 in Virginia, with offices in Charlottesville and Lynchburg. He has been a national speaker for the chiropractic profession on matters of documentation, compliance, electronic health records and general practice management; he has consulted with multiple chiropractic-centered companies to improve product design and usability. He has worked with several community groups, the Charlottesville Youth Program and Rotary Club. At Sherman College, in addition to working with interns at the Chiropractic Health Center, he teaches classes on clinical management.
The doctor of chiropractic program at Sherman College requires students to complete more than 4,800 hours (14 quarters) of classroom and laboratory study and also includes an internship in the college’s on-campus Chiropractic Health Center. To enter the D.C. program, students must have at least 90 semester hours of college-level courses, including courses in the sciences.