We get asked all the time about what it it takes to become an acupuncturist. How long is the schooling, etc? And, many patients who come to community acupuncture get really interested in the idea of going to school, themselves, and becoming a licensed acupuncturist. We are flattered to the extent that these patients’ experience at our clinic led them to a love of acupuncture or a curiosity about being a community “acupunk”. There is so much information we’d like to share about these questions in order to help people think about whether it makes sense for them to pursue an acupuncture education.
We’ve been talking and blogging about how PCA is now a member of The People’s Organization of Community Acupuncture. This new coop which will help to create new and nourish existing community acupuncture clinics also has a goal of radically changing acupuncture education in this country. We want to make acupuncture training accessible and affordable to working people and students from families with working class or middle class incomes. Currently, many students come out of acupuncture school with $100,000 worth of debt and statistically bleak prospects for earning a living as a full-time acupuncturist. We think this can and will change as we create more and more community acupuncture clinics which will create more and more living wage jobs for acupuncturists, and as we create a more rational and less profit-driven system of training and licensing competent and caring acupunks.
If you’d like some more information about the current state of affairs around acu education, and about the direction we’d like to move in as a national organization, please explore these two articles written by owners of of other community acupuncture clinics.
“So…You Want to Be an Acupuncturist” from Turning Point Community Acupuncture in Frederick, Md.
“I Want to Become an Acupuncturist” from Working Class Acupuncture in Portland, Or.