Holistic therapies generally don't fit into the category of traditional or allopathic medicine. Often called complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) or integrative medicine, holistic medicine programs might include training in such therapies as herbal and homeopathic medicines, dietary supplements, relaxation techniques and acupuncture. In addition to holistic health minors or elective coursework, some programs include fellowships or internship experiences. Michigan has three colleges and universities that offer certificate or degree programs in holistic medicine.
Oakland University (OU) is located in suburban Rochester Hills, north of Detroit. The School of Health Sciences at OU offers a Bachelor of Science in Wellness, Health Promotion and Injury Prevention. The program offers eight specializations, including complementary medicine, exercise science, and nutrition and health. Alternate healing traditions will be explored in the complementary medicine focus. There is also a wellness, health promotion and injury prevention minor.
University of Michigan - Ann Arbor
The University of Michigan (UM) at Ann Arbor is about 45 minutes west of Detroit and is the second largest school in the state. The University of Michigan Integrative Medicine (UMIM) program is housed in the Medical School at UM and is available to students interested in earning a holistic education as part of the four-year medical program.
This interdisciplinary program includes the study of holistic approaches to anxiety and depression, cancer and musculoskeletal pain, as well as some modalities like herbal therapy and acupuncture. Students can also complete a CAM clinical elective. UMIM also offers a one-year integrative medicine fellowship for medical students completing residencies and continuing education courses for students and physicians.
Western Michigan University
Western Michigan University (WMU) is located in Kalamazoo, in the southwestern corner of the state. Its holistic healthcare program is one of very few of its kind in the U.S. and is offered through the WMU College of Health and Human Services. The college offers a graduate certificate program in integrative holistic health and wellness, as well as a minor in holistic health for students pursuing a bachelor's degree.
The 18-credit graduate certificate program in holistic health can be completed on its own or earned in conjunction with graduate studies in an area such as occupational therapy, psychology, education or nursing. Core classes include holistic healthcare, holistic methods and a 180-hour internship experience. Some of the electives offered involve holistic strategies for illness and end-of-life issues, expressive arts, meditation, tai chi and yoga.
The holistic health minor includes 18 credits of coursework. Program participants can choose from courses that focus on such topics as healing and visual arts, holism and the environment, and holistic approaches to aging.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type & Setting||Holistic Programs Offered||2018-19 Tuition and Fees*|
|Oakland University||Four-year, public; large suburb||Bachelor of Science in Wellness, Health Promotion and Injury Prevention (also offered as a minor)||$12,606 in-state, $24,230 out-of-state (undergraduate)|
|University of Michigan - Ann Arbor||Four-year, public; midsize city||Doctor of Medicine (Integrative Medicine)||$23,456 in-state, $47,006 out-of-state (graduate)|
|Western Michigan University||Four-year, public; small city|| Graduate Certificate in Integrative Holistic Health and Wellness,
Minor in Holistic Health
|$12,483 in-state, $15,373 out-of-state (undergraduate); $16,561 in-state, $30,492 out-of-state (graduate)|
Source: *National Center for Education Statistics.