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West Campus Spring 2011 Class Graduates 18 New Doctors

6/10/2011 (Archived)

Photo gallery: http://www.palmer.edu/gallery/west_campus_grad_060911/index.html  

Eighteen graduates received their Doctor of Chiropractic (D.C.) degrees at Palmer College of Chiropractic’s West Campus Spring Quarter 2011 commencement on June 9 in the theater of the Santa Clara Convention Center.

Trisha Lenore Smith (San Diego, Calif.) and Jennifer Elizabeth Little (Port Angeles, Wash.) graduated as class valedictorian and salutatorian, respectively, with Summa Cum Laude (3.90-4.00) honors.

R. Tyler (Ty) Dennis (Laie, Hawaii) and Oliver Sanchez (Vancouver, B.C., Canada) graduated with Magna Cum Laude (3.70-3.89) academic honors.

All of the honors graduates were also recognized for their selection as members to Palmer’s West Campus chapter of the Pi Tau Delta International Chiropractic Honor Society, the oldest and most distinguished honor society in the chiropractic profession.

Ty Dennis also earned the “Virgil V. Strang Philosophy Award.” Selected by a faculty panel, the “Virgil V. Strang Philosophy Award” recognizes a deserving graduate for his or her “distinctive accomplishment and contributions to the philosophical principles of chiropractic as a student at Palmer College’s West Campus.”

Trisha Smith also received the following awards:


  • The “Clinical Excellence” award, which is presented to the graduate who has uniquely distinguished him- or herself during the internship portion of their educational experience at Palmer’s West Campus, and who has performed the tasks of the student doctor with exceptional proficiency in the following categories: patient diagnosis; chiropractic technique; radiography; and case management.
  • West Campus Sports Council executive officer award.
  • The “Student Fellow Award,” which is selected by members of the graduating class, and is presented to the individual whom the class feels has uniquely distinguished him or herself by their “unselfish service and dedication to the betterment of the Palmer West experience.”

Dr. Randy Waters, West Campus associate clinical professor, presented the innovation. Dr. Kimberlee Davis, West Campus associate professor, read the names of the graduates, and Dr. Richard DeSarbo, associate professor, turned the hoods.

Renowned sports chiropractor Dr. Thomas Hyde, a member of the American Chiropractic Association Sports Council Hall of Fame, presented the commencement address. Dr. Hyde, former team chiropractor for the Miami Dolphins and Univ. of Miami football teams, served as president and executive director of the ACA Sports Council for eight years, and in 2009 was named “Person of the Year” by Dynamic Chiropractic magazine.