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Palmer students expand their clinical experience through preceptorships

Katelyn Seaba, D.C., (Main, '20).New Palmer College graduate Katelyn Seaba, D.C. (Main, ’20) just finished a clinical rotation at Bigfork Valley Hospital in Bigfork, Minnesota, and with that came the confidence that she’s ready to provide chiropractic care to any patient she may come in contact with. Clinical rotations are truly opportunities for Palmer students to grow their clinical experience prior to graduation.

“Not only did I learn how to put all my clinical skills together, but I also saw rare conditions that I thought I would only learn about in school,” said Dr. Seaba. “I’ve seen babies, teens, middle-aged and elderly patients. If I were to open my own clinic tomorrow, I wouldn’t fear the array of patients that may come through my doors.”

Working in an integrative care setting also gave her the opportunity to provide sideline care at sporting events, shadow surgeries and work with patients overcoming significant disease.

“I saw a patient who survived an abdominal aortic aneurysm rupture, peripheral nerve entrapments, diabetic neuropathies regaining sensation, and a patient who lost all function of the lower limbs as a result of cancer of their T9 vertebra – which they then gained back again slowly,” she said.

Dr. Seaba completed her rotation under Mike Olson, D.C., CCSP, ICSP (Main, ‘11) at Bigfork Valley Hospital. Dr. Olson began this program at the hospital six years ago and has hosted 13 students through the program.

“I’m adamant that chiropractors need to be involved in integrative care,” said Dr. Olson. “This is an opportunity for our profession. Since I started, we’ve grown our presence in hospital settings, and now we get a lot of calls requesting chiropractic integration. My ability to pass on what I’ve learned is important, and we need more students learning how to work in an integrative setting.”

While chiropractors provide care without the use of drugs or surgery, Dr. Olson says “I want my students comfortable interacting with all types of care. They need that knowledge and background. My students sit in on physical-therapy sessions and typically shadow five to 10 different surgeries and spinal injections.”

As Dr. Seaba was finishing her rotation, 12th quarter Palmer Florida student McKenzee Schultz’s was just beginning. For McKenzee, this experience is exactly the opportunity she’s been looking for.

“I’ve always been interested in working in an integrated-care hospital setting,” McKenzee said. “If you want to get better, you’ve got to push yourself, and this is giving me that extra opportunity.”

Palmer College of Chiropractic holds academic affiliations with 45 Department of Defense/Veterans Affairs hospitals, integrative health hospitals, and pain management clinics to provide students with additional clinical learning experience. Learn more about preceptor programs available at

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