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happy new year 2022 from MH Vicars School of Massage Therapy

Here’s to a brand new year full of health and happiness!

We considered opening this year-end message by acknowledging that 2021 has been another complicated and stressful year for our students and staff. But then we thought—focusing on the negative is hardly in the holiday spirit, is it?

And it’s a bit passé, anyway. Reminiscing about the unprecedented challenges of the pandemic and saying “good riddance” to the old year is sooo 2020.

So instead of listing the challenges that we’ve all faced in 2021, I’m going to use my final blog post of the year to celebrate the things that brought us joy in the last 12 months.

MH Vicars School Celebrates 20 Years by Earning CMTCA Accreditation

At the beginning of the year, we thought that the biggest news of 2021 was going to be our 20th Anniversary celebrations. We were looking forward to the opportunity to reminisce about the past and catch up with 20 years’ worth of successful massage therapists. After all, two decades (and counting) of providing exceptional massage therapy education to adult learners in Western Canada is worth making a fuss about!

But—alas—the pandemic marched on and bumped “party planning” off the top of our to-do list. And instead of spending the year thinking about the past, we got to do something even better: dream about the future.

Because the biggest news of 2021 is that we earned preliminary accreditation status from the Canadian Massage Therapy Council for Accreditation.

This is a huge accomplishment, and many years in the making. It’s a big deal for us as a school, and for our current and future students. It’s also a new high water mark for massage therapy education in this province; MH Vicars School is one of only two private massage therapy colleges in Alberta to have made it onto this prestigious list.

To learn more about accreditation and what it means, read this blog post from July!

Public Clinic Returns!

We had to adapt our program in a lot of big and little ways to keep our community as safe as possible during the pandemic, especially before life-saving vaccines became widely available. These changes were essential, but we really missed the way things used to be. The hardest change to get used to was the temporary closure of our public clinics.

We continued to offer hands-on practical experience for our students, and our faculty and supervisors did an incredible job of turning the student-only practicum shifts into dynamic learning opportunities.

But we missed the real thing: the excitement of running a massage therapy clinic and the satisfaction of treating our clients’ pain and stress.

So we were beyond thrilled to reopen our doors to the public this fall, with appropriate health precautions in place for both clients and therapists.

You can click here to book a massage from one of our talented student therapists.

New and Improved Online Booking for Clinic Clients

Were you wondering why you heard shouts of joy and relief coming from the vicinity of our Calgary and Edmonton campuses in mid-November? We can answer in one word: Jane.

That’s the name of the online booking and scheduling software that we began using for or student clinics this fall. It has already made life easier for our clients, students, and staff.

We’re getting great feedback on the new system, especially from some our long-time regular clients who have been with us through all the ups and downs of our previous booking systems.

Haven’t used Jane to book an appointment yet? You can watch a quick video tutorial here.

New Weekly Class Schedule Provides Flexibility for January Students

Our goal has always been to make massage therapy education accessible to as many people as possible. One of the ways we do that is through our innovative blended-learning program delivery with the choice of either weekly or monthly schedule options. Another is to offer both September and January start dates.

But until this year, January students didn’t have as much choice as students who began in September. The weekly schedule wasn’t available for them.

Starting in January 2020, though, we now offer weekly and monthly classes in both September and January. (Of course, the options may still vary between campuses, based on student interest).

More variety means more flexibility, and for some people can even make the difference between starting their dream career and putting school on hold for another year.

We’re looking forward to greeting a new crew of both weekly and monthly students in a few weeks!

This year wasn’t easy, but you made it great!

Thank you to all of our students, clients, and incredible faculty and staff for all that you did in 2021. The compassion, patience, hard work, and positivity that we’ve seen around us this year has been incredibly inspiring. It’s a joy to be a part of your lives.

 

From all of us at MH Vicars School,

Happy New Year.

Christmas is a week away, and Hanukkah’s already begun… have you and your family completed your shopping?

If you – or someone who’ll be shopping for you – need some last-minute gift inspiration, look no further. The Vicars School elves have put together a list of gifts for massage therapists (and massage therapy students). 

Check out our suggestions, and then tell us what we’ve missed in the comments!

 

  • New sheets (is there any better gift than not having to do laundry as often?)

  • Washable massage table-sized blanket (we use fleece ones at the School)

  • Table warmer with washable cover

  • Thermophore – a bit more of an investment than some of the items on this list, but trust us, “yule” love it

  • New scrubs. Who says washable can’t be fashionable?

  • Empty lotion bottles – the perfect stocking stuffer

  • Essential oils such as lavender and Japanese mint

  • Foot massage lotion

  • Wheat/rice bags

  • Gel packs for cold hydrotherapy

  • Eye pillows

  • Small towels

  • Body bolster set

  • Trigger point chart

  • “Anatomy Trains” by Thomas Myers, a fascinating book on the role of fascia for bodyworkers

  • “Atlas of Human Anatomy” by Frank Netter. The world’s most popular anatomy atlas.

  • Stability ball, theraband, yoga mat, tennis balls, and other remedial exercise staples

Some of this is available from specialty stores like Massage Essentials, the Massage Therapy Supply Outlet, and Tension Prevention. Others can be found at sports stores, and of course online.

Can you think of anything we’ve missed? What’s on your massage wish list? Let us know in the comments.