Hear from Our Students Graduates

Brilliant SUNM students prepare to become licensed
Students who come to Santa Fe, New Mexico and complete Southwest University of Naprapathic Medicine’s doctorate program leave changed people. The amount of personal and professional growth that will take place over three years will astound you. Hear from students and graduates about their experience at Southwest University of Naprapathic Medicine.

Hear from Our Student Graduates

Kaitlin Rodriguez

This experience has really prepared me for my career after graduation. This experience helped me to prepare my confidence in treating patients. I just want to say thank you to everyone who helped me along this journey. I really appreciate it.

Kaitlin Rodriguez
Alec Gallegos

I enjoyed my experience at SUNM and honestly am very thankful for every person that helped me along the way. I gained a tremendous amount of knowledge throughout this experience and learned so much from my peers, teachers, and all of the staff. It is crazy to think that I will finally be done with school after I don’t know how many years with no breaks and finally be able to start my career in something that I am truly passionate about. The greatest reward in life is being able to do something that you love and make a living, but also pass on the value of health to others. It makes me truly happy that patients would come to me every single week and trust me with their body in my hands knowing that they would walk out of the treatment room feeling relief.

Alek Gallegos
Peter Campos

During my internship I learned how to understand people and what they are dealing with. I learned how to open my heart to them.

His advice to incoming students: “embrace the challenge”.

Pete Campos
Jessica Perea

I am the co-owner and founder of Life Wellness Center in Santa Fe. I found out about Naprapathy when we recently hired a SUNM graduate. Promoting and supporting our practitioners is important to me. So, I took the time to learn more about Naprapathy and how it differentiates from other manual medicine practices. I almost instantaneously became drawn to the profession. I am inspired by naprapathy, particularly in its original form, in every way. I am fascinated with its history and unique approach to physical medicine. I enrolled in the doctorate program a year and a half ago and have been bestowed with a community of abundant support! Naprapathy seems to tie together all of my interests in wellness, nutrition, and manual medicine. This program, which encompasses sound evidence-based principles and an integrative approach to complementary medicine, is a hidden gem which I am proud to behold!

Jessica Perea

I started out with a science degree from Monash University in Melbourne, but my course has changed several times since college. I’ve always been drawn to helping people, working as a volunteer ski patroller and in the NM film industry as a set medic for many years.

A close friend referred me to Naprapathy after I had been experiencing symptoms of thoracic outlet syndrome, on and off for several years. I was having pain, burning and weakness in my hands, and I wasn’t able to gain relief from my symptoms until I came to the Naprapathic Medicine of New Mexico. Receiving Naprapathic treatment helped me to recover from those symptoms, and inspired me to consider the doctoral program.

At almost 50 it was difficult for me to commit to the program initially, but I’m halfway through now, and I feel blessed and lucky to be here. It’s motivating to know that I will be able to help others with manual medicine. What’s more, Naprapathy encompasses a community of experienced practitioners and mentors who have been helping people for many years, and I get to learn from them.

Diane MinFa
“I have a bachelor's degree in biology, chemistry and computer science, and am a mother of seven. I had been interested in becoming a natural doctor for a long time, but decided to stay home and raise my children first. About six years ago, I took the prerequisites for the nursing program at CNM, and was planning on becoming a nurse practitioner. I wanted to help people using natural holistic treatments and also be able to make a good living. After passing the entrance exam (HESI) for nursing school, I unfortunately did not get into the program at CNM (I was 16th on the waiting list). During that time, however, I was going for Naprapathic treatments on my hip. Through the treatments, I found out about SUNM! I fell in love with Naprapathy because it offered pain relief in a natural drug free way, as well as advice on diet supplements and lifestyle.”
Cheryl Armstrong
unnamed (1)
“I have always been interested in working in the medical career field. As a young girl, I wanted to be an orthopedic surgeon, but life takes many twists and turns and I fulfilled that need by working as a Candy Striper, a Pink Lady hospital volunteer, and a medical transcriptionist so that I could stay home and raise my four beautiful daughters! I became interested in physical therapy after one of my daughter’s had multiple injuries from gymnastics. I loved being a physical therapist assistant, but always felt that I was missing a component as a PTA in helping my patients achieve their best outcomes. When I was introduced to Naprapathy, I felt like I had found my place in helping patients overcome their chronic pain and functional limitations!”
Rhonda Benavidez

“My name is Lydia Trusso, and I am currently working as a registered nurse while completing my studies in Naprapathy at SUNM. I have felt drawn to both nursing and healthcare roles since childhood. I graduated with my Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee in 2017. I loved the work that I could perform as a nurse, but soon felt like I was missing some key elements to my ability to deliver care.

After suffering a back injury, I discovered the practice of Naprapathy. Naprapathy is a system of connective tissue therapy that uses manual manipulation, exercise, postural counseling, nutritional counseling, and other modalities to help alleviate pain and dysfunction. Naprapaths treat many imbalances and injuries such as inflammation, muscle spasms, and pain without the use of invasive diagnostics or pharmaceuticals. My continued interest in the health sciences has been fueled by new understandings and education that I have been able to receive through my naprapathic studies.

As a behavioral health nurse, I became more and more familiar with the cycle of chronic pain leading to opioid abuse and addiction. Patients frequently described how chronic pain played a large role in their own mental health, and I often felt at a loss for how to help these patients in a dynamic and sustainable way. With Naprapathy, I have found a way to further pursue my health sciences education, as well as continue my goal of providing exceptional care to my patients.

With this practice, I have been able to see meaningful improvements in not only patients' pain, but in their quality of life as a result of a cascade of changes after treatments. I love the way that Naprapathy works with the body to help it heal itself. I would encourage any nurses who enjoy hands-on care, and have an interest in physical medicine and rehabilitation to consider Naprapathy as a way to continue their journey of patient care.”

Lydia Trusso
unnamed (2)

“I came across [SUNM] online, came to an open house, and honestly, I fell in love with it right away. This profession has so many different specialties that you can go into. It’s such a beautiful thing - we have anti-inflammatory medicine, we have functional nutrition, we have manual therapy and the major bodywork aspects of that. Bringing them together is really a new form of medicine. This is functional medicine at it’s best - we treat people, we don’t treat symptoms. There’s no better feeling that having my patients tell me I’ve helped them live a better life.

My doctorate from SUNM has helped me realize my dreams and goals in so many ways. Being a naprapath has allowed me to step into my purpose in life.”

Dr. Christianna Clow
unnamed (3)

“In 2005, I injured my lower back. A friend had told me about Naprapathy, so I started seeing Dr. LaVista at the Naprapathic Medicine of New Mexico (NMNM) Clinic. I was so happy to have a doctor that cared about me and how I was doing. The treatments were so effective that within 6 months, I was able to retake the firefighter fitness test and pass.

One time at the clinic, Dr. Nuzzo asked me after a treatment if I would be interested in the new university that he was working on opening. I said YES - as long as I could keep my day job with the Santa Fe County Fire Department. I started classes in 2011 and graduated in 2014.

I was the first student to register at SUNM, and was very proud to be part of the beginning of this wonderful university. It was small, and we were developing the class layouts as we learned. I really enjoyed helping grow the class material. It’s just amazing how far SUNM has come since then! Here I am now, working at the fire department and as a Naprapathic doctor.”

Dr. Renee Nix
Skip to content
Malcare WordPress Security