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BCOM has an international reputation for academic and research excellence

Daniel Winfield

Daniel graduated from BCOM in 2012 and was the prize winner for Best Naturopathic Research project in his final year, he also won the Presentation Prize at The 9th Chiropractic, Osteopathy & Physiotherapy Annual Conference.

“I started off my career as a maintenance engineer. As the big three-zero loomed, I knew I wanted to achieve more with my life, but didn’t know what. I quit my job to go backpacking around South-East Asia. I thought much about what career direction I was going to take on my return. What was I good at? What would I enjoy?

Ever since my childhood I’ve had a passion for anything that involves working with my hands. I have a knack for problem-solving. Within a week of my return from Bangkok I had enrolled as an undergraduate in Building and Architectural Studies at the University of Brighton. I graduated in 2005 with a distinction. I was blown away by my own achievements. I had doubted my own ability throughout the entire course. Within a month I had been taken on as a Trainee Site Manager. My first assignment was 8 luxury new-builds. By the time the project was having its second fix carpentry I was Site Manager! But I kept thinking back to where it was I had wanted to see myself 6 years earlier. Yes, I was solving problems, using my hands and dealing with people, but I wasn’t happy. I went travelling again to rethink my career. Whilst away, I read a naturopathy book by Sebastian Kneipp, and this inspired me to look further into naturopathy.

I discovered that BCOM, with its long history of teaching naturopathy and osteopathy, offered the exciting prospect of graduating as an osteopath as well as a naturopath. I could work with people, work with my hands, be creative and use problem-solving skills… all the things I had said I wanted. But this was Masters level. Was I capable of that? I took strength from my success at my previous studies.

One of the best things about having studied at BCOM is the knowledge that I have had some of the most extensive training available to undergraduate osteopaths in Europe. I have heard of employers who wait for BCOM students to graduate before they advertise for associate osteopath positions. For a college of its size I found BCOM to be particularly well-equipped for research. The staff were all so kind to me when, in the last year, I suffered a devastating personal loss. The support I received from the faculty management and everyone at college during this difficult time was incredible, without which I may not have made it through to graduation. Of course there were wonderful patients who were so inspiring, and making a difference to their quality of life is, for me, one of the most rewarding aspects of osteopathy.

The day I graduated and picked up my award was the proudest day in my parents’ life, Even at 40, your mum and dad still feel pride when you do well. I was the first person to graduate in my family on both sides, ever – and I did it twice! It’s never too late.”

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