Clinical Massage Therapy, HammondDavid
“Born and raised in Melville. I’ve basically been in Indiana my entire life, minus my military experience. My end date was Feb. 6, 2015. I was in the Air Defense Artillery, shooting missiles down. So, I was in Korea and Japan for two years.
At Brightwood, I am currently in the massage therapy program. I chose it because I’ve always had an affinity toward massage. When my mother was in school, I would give her massages. I knew it was something I liked doing, but I never thought of it in terms of being a lucrative job. I have always just enjoyed making people feel better. I really wanted to alleviate pain.
So far, it’s been a great experience. My classmates are really passionate about what they want to do, which makes for an even better learning environment because you don’t have people that are slacking off or not coming to class. I do see some of that, but for the most part, people are very goal-oriented and driven; this is especially true with older classmates.
“I have always just enjoyed making people feel better.”
After we complete training, there are several clients that come in on a daily basis for us to practice on. I’m not there yet, but I have filled in for people who were about to graduate, which was a great experience. For me, I’ll practice on friends, family or anyone that’s willing. This is just something that’s awesome for me and something that I’ve always done.
It’s nice, because I’ve been able to apply my military training to my schooling. During my time in the service, every day we had this acronym called LDRSHIP drilled into us. It stood for Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless Service, Honor, Integrity and Personal Courage. So, we had this acronym that told you how to act and condone yourself in any kind of setting. I try and apply these values when I’m at Brightwood.
My military experience also helped me deal with the everyday stresses of life because it gave me a broader sense of what struggle could mean. What I went through in the military is nothing in comparison to what civilian life can dish out.
“What I went through in the military is nothing in comparison to what civilian life can dish out.”
I will be done May 19, 2017, so my next step is to start the externship program. I plan to do an externship through various companies, which may or may not be what I’m looking for. Ultimately, I really want to do my own thing. I want to be my own boss.
My advice for veterans looking to return to civilian life – definitely do your research and look at all your options. For me, I didn’t stop asking questions. I was really goal-driven, so being stagnant makes me crazy. The best option for people coming out of the military is to go directly into your schooling. I think that is going to be extremely beneficial. Don’t waste any time.”