Life at AECC University College: Chiropractic Student, Carolin Pfenning
International student, Carolin Pfenning moved to Bournemouth from Germany to study the Master of Chiropractic course at AECC University College in 2019. She is currently in her second year of studies and is a keen advocate for our School of Chiropractic and for studying abroad.
She discusses the support she has received from her tutors while studying at the University College and about the aspects of her course she has enjoyed most so far, including the on-site facilities which have allowed her to put the theory she has learnt into practice.
“I’ve wanted to become a Chiropractor since I was as young as thirteen-years-old. When I was making the decision to study the subject, I spoke to a lot of people from within the Chiropractic profession, many of whom were good friends of mine, and they suggested studying at AECC University College as they’d had a good learning experience there themselves.”
“I honestly really love the course. The tutors are by far the best I have ever had. Each member of staff has their own expert knowledge, but also a broad-based knowledge of the subject. It really shows that they are always up to date with current practice and give you the most recent knowledge and health care research available. Whenever I have a question, I know that I can go to one of my tutors and ask for help or discuss topics to really gain a deeper understanding of my field of study.
“Not just during the pandemic, but also before, all my tutors were always happy to help. Being in Germany over summer I have contacted my tutors via email and had Zoom meetings to meet on a more personal level. Also, I was in regular contact with Student Services on campus and we have continued to catch-up on a regular basis while I’ve been at home. The team always offer support and write back to me whenever I have a question or I just need motivational and mental-health support during these unique circumstances.”
The Chiropractic Course
“For me, anything to do with anatomy, the human body and biomechanics is fascinating. I think it is really interesting to see how everything is connected and that a movement in one part of your body influences every other part too.
“I really like all the facilities we have on campus and especially used the dry lab, the Chiropractic Clinic and the Ultrasound Clinic. Studying in the dry lab with models really helped me to picture the knowledge in my head and visualize when I am working with my friends in practical class where bones are and how a joint is moving.
“Also, I really enjoy having the opportunity to be a model for ultrasound modules. This is a whole new experience of studying and seeing my own anatomy real life on a screen. It is almost like studying with your own body. It is not only fascinating, but I noticed that this helps me to remember things better since I experienced it on my own body.”
“The Chiropractic Clinic I use not only to observe the students and appointments, but also to be treated myself which helps to gain an understanding of how we work as a Chiropractor, how to communicate with patients and how exercises and treatment should feel. In my opinion it is one aspect to know how to treat and how to talk to patients, but it is another to experience it yourself, reflect on it and then come up with your own way of practising and studying.”
“Highlights from my first year of study at AECC University College have been meeting new people and getting to know myself as a person more. All the experiences within my first months of living away from home and my friends and family, in a foreign country, made me grow up so much. Studying the right subject in the right place with lovely people can be so soul-warming and fun.
“When I’m not studying, I enjoy spending time at the student gym, located on campus. Also, as a Student Ambassador I am one of many students who like to spread the news and facts about AECC University College and give real-life insight into what it’s like to study here and, hopefully, inspire other people to have a look at our University College and become a student here too. As a Student Ambassador I help during open days or other little events which are on campus, being a contact person for visitors and interested students and parents. You also have the opportunity to drive into different towns and represent the college at UCAS fairs. We are always there to help whatever is needed. This could be giving a tour on campus or help support with different events from the University College.”
Looking to the future
“I’ve not yet completed work experience other than the observations in our clinic on campus, but my plans are to observe some Chiropractors in England, especially around Bournemouth and Southampton to gain a broad perspective and insights into the real working life as a Chiropractor. I am especially interested in Chiropractic for babies and this is where I want to observe a few specialists.
“When I have finished my studies, my plan is to go back to Germany as I want Chiropractic to become more popular there and have a part to play in that. I hope that our profession gets a better role and position within our healthcare system. I want to give people in more insights into our profession, how we can help and make it available for everyone.”
Proud to study at AECC University College
“I would definitely recommend studying Chiropractic at AECC University College. Firstly, because you get a really evidence-based study with many years of experience from tutors. Also, there are so many facilities which you can use to support your study but also to gain real-life experiences.
“I also think it is really important that with studying abroad, you get the opportunity to learn a different language and to explore yourself more, to start living an independent life and all of this in a beautiful environment near the beach and sea. These years will help you grow in your educational life and also to grow as a person.
“What makes me proud to call myself an AECC University College student is that this means I am part of the AECC family. I have never gained so much support from other students, neighbours and educational staff before. It is not just the feeling that I go to Uni there and learn something about my future profession, I really like to be in and around the college and to feel connected with all those people around me.”
You can find out more about the Chiropractic courses AECC University has to offer, here.