Apprenticeship Proposal Report #3
As you may have read here and here, the proposal that was submitted to have apprenticeship accepted as a route to acupuncture licensure in Oregon was, for the moment, denied. We had hoped that by adding significant didactic training to an apprenticeship that this could be considered equivalent to ACAOM-accredited master's programs in acupuncture. (ACAOM is the U.S. accrediting body for acupuncture schools).
The benefit of such a plan would have reached far beyond Oregon state lines. This is because Portland Community College would have put together a blended-learning program that would heavily utilize instructor-led distance learning in addition to some long weekend, in-person classes that anyone in the country could have attended. Such a program would have suppored apprenticeships in any state that currently allows them and would have provided a strong case for making change in some of the states that don't. Classes would also have been helpful for students studying for NCCAOM exams. (NCCAOM is an organization that provides certification in acupuncture via the passage of their exams. Many states require this certification for acupuncture licensure).
The snag in our plan was that the chair of the Acupuncture Advisory Committee for the Oregon Medical Board contacted the NCCAOM in preparation for our meeting and was told that the NCCAOM is in the process of evaluating and possibly changing some of the parameters of the apprenticeship path for their acupuncture certification. This resulted in the Committee declining to weigh in on our proposal until the NCCAOM makes whatever changes they intend to make. I have contacted the NCCAOM and they are discussing the issue but changes moves slowly and any changes they may or may not make are not going to be apparent any time soon.
So, we're in limbo with regards to getting a didactic program together for supporting apprenticeships. POCA members may work on some future initiatives but the nature and timing of those initiatives is unclear at the moment (check inside the POCA Forums for future updates).