Dynamic Chiropractic – September 1, 2003, Vol. 21, Issue 18

Upstate New York College Becomes 17th U.S. School to Offer DC Degree

By Michael Devitt

D'Youville College may sound more like something out of a Dr. Seuss story than a prestigious institution of higher learning, but there's much more to this school than meets the eye (or in this case, the ear).

Founded in 1908 by the Grey Nuns religious sect as the first college for women in western New York, it was named after Marguerite D'Youville, an 18th-century Canadian woman whose care for the poor and aged earned her the title "The Mother of Universal Charity," and resulted in her being made a saint by the Catholic Church in 1990.

Today, D'Youville is an independent, four-year coeducational college located in Buffalo, just minutes from the Canadian border and within easy driving distance of some of the largest cities in North America. It is accredited by several organizations, including the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, and offers more than two dozen degree programs.

Over the years, the school has established a reputation for providing high-quality education in the healing arts. It created the first four-year nursing degree program in western New York more than 60 years ago, and now offers degree and certificate programs in occupational therapy, physical therapy, physician assistant, dieti-tics and health care administration, among other disciplines.

In June, the school embarked on a new path in health care education, when it received approval from the New York State Department of Education to offer a doctoral degree in chiropractic. The department's approval makes D'Youville the 17th institution in the U.S. to offer a doctor of chiropractic degree, and only the second accredited, multidisci-plinary college in the country to do so. The first, the University of Bridgeport in Connecticut, began its chiropractic program in 1990.

In an e-mail sent to Dynamic Chiropractic on July 23, D'Youville officials stated they are following the Council on Chiropractic Education's most current Standards for Doctor of Chiropractic Programs and Requirements for Institutional Status, and are in the process of establishing eligibility to apply for accreditation. According to the Standards, once eligibility has been established, a two-year time period is necessary for the development and implementation of a required self-study report. During the interim period, D'Youville will follow the requirements as outlined in Section 2 of the Standards.

The establishment of the chiropractic program was the result of several years of planning, and could lead to other alternative health programs being offered in the future, according to Dr. Paul Hageman, chair of D'Youville's Department of Integrative Holistic Health Studies and lead faculty member for the development of the program.

"D'Youville began studying the feasibility of offering academic programs related to complementary and alternative therapies three years ago," said Dr. Hageman. "The selection of chiropractic as the first program was based on a number of factors, including the fact that chiropractic is both alternative and mainstream as well, and the profession has gained popular acceptance."

"This new program will be the cornerstone of our Integrative Holistic Health Department at D'Youville," added Sister Denise A. Roche, the college's president. "In addition to our current certificate program in hospice and palliative care, we envision that the department will eventually add future offerings in the areas of acupuncture, integrative healing, and transpersonal psychology."

The chiropractic program will be offered in two formats. One is for incoming students, and will provide them the opportunity to earn both a Doctor of Chiropractic and a Bachelor of Science degree in seven years. Students who enter the program at the freshman level will pay undergraduate tuition for the duration of the seven-year program. The second level is for transfer and/or second-career students who can earn the DC degree in four years, provided they have an undergraduate degree and meet specific academic requirements.

Enrollees will learn much more than just the fundamentals of chiropractic care. In addition to chiropractic diagnosis, analysis and adjustive techniques, students will be integrated into classes in nursing, occupational and physical therapy, and other related courses. According to Hageman, the purpose of this diverse curriculum is to "facilitate communication among professionals and to bring about an enhancement of patient care."

The program will be housed on the fourth floor of the D'Youville Academic Center. While several classrooms and lecture halls are already in place, the school plans to construct a state-of-the-art chiropractic clinic inside the center to provide for the clinical training portion of the chiropractic program.

The first class is expected to enroll in the seven-year program this September, while the four-year program will begin in September 2004. College officials anticipate that approximately 30 students will sign up for the chiropractic program in the next academic year.

For more information on D'Youville's chiropractic program, visit www.dyc.edu, or call (716) 881-3200.


  1. Franczyk A. D'Youville approved for chiropractic doctorate. Business First of Buffalo, July 11, 2003.
  2. D'Youville to offer chiropractic program. D'Youville College news release, July 10, 2003.
  3. Overview of D'Youville doctor of chiropractic program, including curriculum content and options. Documents provided to Dynamic Chiropractic, July 19, 2003.


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