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June 9, 2022

AIMC Celebrates Graduation in the Berkeley Sunshine

AIMC Masters and Doctorate students are sitting during the graduation ceremony
On Sunday, May 22, 2022, the AIMC community came together on Ohlone Land at the Berkeley Marina to celebrate the graduation of candidates of the Masters in Science and Doctor of Acupuncture and Integrative Medicine. It was a joyous occasion, honoring the accomplishments of AIMC students, and their new chapters as practitioners. Faculty spoke, families applauded their graduates, our graduates took the Acupuncturist’s Oath, and the celebration also included a Taiko drumming performance by Emeryville Taiko. The summer season is prime for joy, warmth, and connection, and this event captured all of these aspects!

Graduates wearing their caps and gowns stand in front of a blue background and sit on green grass

The day was particularly poignant as it was the first Graduation Ceremony AIMC has held after cancelling in 2020 due to COVID-19. It was a touching reunion of many classes and classmates from the last few years. After all the joy and celebration of the day was over, we asked some of our graduates about their reflections, next adventures, and tips for folks interested in pursuing a degree in acupuncture.

Clay Daulton stands at a podium wearing sunglasses & his graduation cap and gown

“I am most looking forward to assisting clients with their health and emotional journeys in life, and also rebooting my Buddhist meditation teaching/ practicing. My big dream is to develop a series of short and long retreats for LGBT+ folks to connect deeply with Buddhist practice and repair the community’s relationship with religious practice, much of which has historically disenfranchised us, to say the least.” –Clay Daulton, on his next adventure after school

Peregrine Whitehurst sits in her graduation cap and gown holding a child on her lap

“I hope that many people take up the cause of learning to grow [traditional medicinal herbs] at a very high quality and sustainably as well as supporting families and organizations in Asia that are growing sustainable herbs. We will also need to establish places of higher learning where people can learn the art of Pao Zhi which is essentially completely unknown in the country but takes years of study in China. I would also love to see community acupuncture continue to expand to be available in more hospitals but also nursing homes, college health centers and even high schools as a low tech, very supportive complement to other modalities. I would really like to see greater respect for the herbal formulae, as that is not currently covered by insurance, but is an incredibly powerful tool for health that I think a great number of people could benefit from.”-Peregrine Whitehurst on her hopes for the future of acupuncture and East Asian herbal medicine

Ilana Harms in her doctorate robe and cap looks thoughtfully at the speaker

“None of us could have predicted how the events of the last few years would impact our culture, our community, and our personal lives. And yet, through it all, we persevered. We pivoted, we moved online, we hustled, we found new ways to engage with each other, our education, our patients, our projects, and our communities […] As we look to the future, I invite my fellow graduates to consider, how will you harness and share all this knowledge, passion, and excitement that you’ve been cultivating? What will you do to help create a better, healthier, more sustainable future for our patients, for our profession, and for ourselves?” –from Ilana Harms’ graduation speech

We are so proud of our graduates, and look forward to seeing all of the ways they will provide comprehensive care to our community with their new degrees, knowledge, and dedication to our field. Congratulations again to the graduating classes of 2020, 2021, and 2022!

If you’d like to connect or follow along with the featured Alums of this article, please contact:

Emeryville Taiko performers drumming during the AIMC graduation ceremony

Ready to Explore a Career in Acupuncture?

Explore our Master’s and Doctorate programs or attend our next Open House or Community Class to learn more. Contact Admissions to get more information & receive announcements about upcoming Application deadlines.

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