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Southwest Acupuncture College - Boulder Reviews

6 reviews
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Don't go. There is a systemic pattern of power abuse at the school, both with teachers and administration. Students are getting expelled and given Honor Code violations for bringing forward complaints.

The CEO of the school (Anthony Abbate) seems to be driven by financial interest first. He sold the school to an international corporation called Human Capital, Incorporated, yet he still operates and profits from it. The cost of the program just went up 15% ($70k to $80k) in the past year. A few years ago it went up 20% in one year.

This for-profit school is under federal watch and in a lawsuit for irresponsible use of federal loans. Only if you are making $150,000 per year is a $1,500 monthly loan payment affordable; the median earned is around $30,000 yearly.

Since you can't transfer credits (even to acupuncture schools), the power abuse is more pronounced. The more you have spent, the less likely you will raise your voice. Students are under extreme stress and fear.
NOT WORTH THE 100K+ in student loans you will accumulate. Most students leave the profession within 5 years after graduation, or have to get another job to support themselves.
Every instructor is required to be a current practitioner. This ensures that the instructors are using the most up-to-date info.
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A Lot Packed Into a Small Space – The school only has 3 classrooms, but not much more is needed for how small the student body is. However, there is a great student lounge with a full size refrigerator to store lunch, toaster oven, microwave, etc. two large couches and ample tables make it a great place to study, catch up with friends or take a quick siesta. Not to mention the beautiful panorama views of the mountains. It is located very close to many restaurants, a gas station, two coffee shops and a grocery store, so although there is no cafeteria on campus, you are never far from food. The school clinic is beautiful and professional which makes the learning environment much more enjoyable!
Comfy Yet Competitive – This school is small, cozy and intimate. The students, faculty, and administration are very close and communication is effective and prompt. I originally started at a school with similar values, but the level of professional and academic prestige is far superior at SWAC. Everyone is held to a very high standard but in a loving and compassionate way. Another unique aspect of studying Oriental Medicine is that it takes 4 years (without summer vacation) to receive your Master's Degree unlike most programs that are 18 months or less. Very intensive, very challenging at times, yet so rewarding! My education here will definitely serve to benefit myself and the community following graduation next year.
Necessary Structure – The program doesn't have as much flexibly as most universities, but this is not a typical school. There is a very specific course to follow to ensure you are learning important info in the proper order. The entire program is a chain of pre-requisites. Each class builds on the next, so our final education is cumulative, not just relevant for one topic. So while the reality of having real life outside of school isn't as apparent, the reward far out weighs any inconvenience.
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