The new program was announced by Robin Taylor, DC, president and principal of the New Zealand Chiropractors Association (NZCA). Plans for the school began back in July of 1993 as part NZCA's "Vision 2000," created to further develop chiropractic in New Zealand. As all New Zealand chiropractors have been trained either in the US, the UK, Canada, or Australia, an undergraduate program was considered an essential component of Vision 2000. Vision 2000 also included plans to develop research facilities, and specialty chiropractic-based services (for the elderly, the injured, and athletes).
The chiropractic program is in conjunction with the University of Auckland. The school's training model is based on programs offered by Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia. Students will attend lectures at the University of Auckland for the first three years of the five year double degree program, while concurrently attending lectures at the newly established NZCA School of Chiropractic. In the fourth and fifth years, students will attend the NZCA school only. The University of Auckland will confer a bachelor's degree in physiology, while the NZCA school will confer the master of chiropractic degree. The university component will be state funded; the chiropractic component will be student fee generated.
The New Zealand Chiropractors Association formed the NZCA Centre for Chiropractic Ltd., to administer the chiropractic college. "This model of chiropractic training," said Dr. James Stinear, executive director of the NZCA Centre for Chiropractic Ltd., and the school's acting principal, "will provide the profession with control over the number and quality of graduates in New Zealand.
"One of the major benefits of the school is that the NZCA will retain ultimate control of the curriculum and numbers of graduates," said Dr. Taylor.
Initially, the faculty will consist of Dr. Stinear; Phillip McMaster, DC, a graduate and former faculty member of Sherman College; and Bernadette Murphy, DC, MSc (Hons), a graduate of the Canadian Memorial College currently working on her doctoral thesis.
Dr. Stinear, a graduate of Sherman College and past president of the NZCA, is the vice president of the Australian Council on Chiropractic Education, which is affiliated with the Council on Chiropractic Education (CCE) in the United States. Private training establishments in New Zealand are accredited by the New Zealand Government's Qualifications Authority (NZQA), which authorizes the awarding of national certificates, diplomas, and degrees.
The five year program will seek accreditation with the Australian Council on Chiropractic Education, once all five years of the program are established. Lloyd Buscomb, DC, a graduate of the Philip Institute of Technology in Melbourne, Australia, is the chairman of the undergraduate committee of the NZCA Council, the academic governing body of the developing program.
A course advisory team is being established from members of the NZCA, which along with the NZQA accreditation, will ensure a quality program is maintained.
The NZCA Centre and school are located in the central business district of Auckland, a short walk from the University campus.
"We are very proud to have established a school of chiropractic," acknowledged Dr. Taylor. He added that the school would provide the "much needed growth of the chiropractic profession in New Zealand."
Editor's note: Inquiries about the program should be sent to: Principle, NZCA School, P.O. Box 607, Manurewa, New Zealand. Tele. and fax: 64 9 274 8388.