AECC's 50th Anniversary

The AECC is celebrating its 50th birthday this year, half a century after being the first chiropractic college of its kind outside North America.

After chiropractic first emerged from the United States in 1895 when Danial David Palmer claimed he restored the hearing of Harvey Lillard by treating his back, it was some 70 years later that the AECC opened its doors. Driven by Robert Beech, Donald Bennett and Elizabeth Bennett, the first home of the AECC on Cavendish Road would serve as the premises where chiropractic education would be delivered for the next 17 years.

With the growing popularity of chiropractic and education delivery, by the mid-seventies new premises were required. Various options were explored before a successful bid was made for the purchase of Boscombe Convent following a merger of local catholic schools. The main building of the AECC on Parkwood Road as we know it today would open in 1982, seeing the library become housed in what had previously been the chapel four years later in 1986.

With Diana, Princess of Wales, becoming patron in 1992 and undergraduate degrees being upgraded from Bachelors to Masters level in 1997, the AECC continued its commitment to continuous improvement and the pursuit of excellence as it moved in to the 21st century. The introduction of MSc Advanced Professional Practice, BSc Clinical Exercise Science and MSc Medical Ultrasound throughout the noughties demonstrated an ability to deliver a broader range of healthcare courses. The purpose-built teaching clinic, opening in 2009, provided a quality facility in which interns could diagnose, treat and rehabilitate patients with musculoskeletal conditions. Furthermore, the introduction of the Access to HE Diploma (Health Sciences) in 2012 offered both prospective students without the necessary grades to go straight to university and people looking to retrain the opportunity to move in to healthcare or further study.

With exciting plans in the pipeline such as the introduction of a state-of-the-art open-upright MRI facility within the clinic as well as being granted Taught Degree Awarding Powers to be able to award its own degrees, the AECC will continue its pioneering outlook it has embraced from the very start.