Faces of LIFE: Jordyn Smith
“Redefining and Honing a Passion for Patient Progress”
As a small-town girl from Saskatchewan, Canada running around with her three sisters, Jordyn Smith and her family did not have much exposure to Chiropractic. Her mom is a seamstress, and her dad works for the school division. Her other siblings found careers related to education and business, so Smith is the one that “branched out into something different.” Her hope is that through Chiropractic, she can return to the rural way of life and serve her hometown community with her new knowledge.
In 2018, Smith graduated from the University of Regina with a Bachelor of Kinesiology- Human Kinetics. She interned at the Regina Sports and Physiotherapy Clinic as a Student Kinesiologist while in school. That work mainly focused on assisting tertiary patients, characterized by highly specialized care for specific ailments. For Smith, this meant primarily working with patients with stagnated progress after primary and secondary care trying to get back to work, putting in often eight hour days with one patient to put them through the paces of stretches and exercises to build up strength.
This often meant identifying specific movements that would be helpful in improving their job performance. For example, Smith recalled a patient who hand-embroidered uniforms for her work, so Smith created a regimen of personal hand exercises to help alleviate some of the pain caused by that repetitive work.
“It was a really neat challenge to come up with different exercises so she could work up her tolerance to doing those things again. That is something I really loved about being a kinesiologist. Something that sets kinesiology apart from Chiropractic is that you are with those people every day, all day long.
For five days a week most of the time, you get to see these people, measure their progress and assess them. Seeing their improvement when they want so badly to get better, seeing them improve and having the stats to say, ‘This is where you started, and this is where you are now.’ That really sparked my love for rehab,” Smith explained.
She elaborated that Chiropractic functions in much the same way, except it is traditionally more patients spread out over a longer period of time. At that point in her life, she had originally planned to become a licensed physiotherapist. Physiotherapists work closely with chiropractors, however, so Smith later went to work in a chiropractic office to see another side to thoughtful health care.
Smith went into it with fresh eyes, since Chiropractic wasn’t something she had been familiar with growing up. While working administration at a chiropractic office and waiting to be admitted to physiotherapy school, the two Life University (Life U) alumni chiropractors practicing out of that office encouraged her to also apply to Life University’s D.C. program. Seeing how Chiropractic had the potential to be a brilliant career path for Smith, they encouraged her to at least give it a shot and see what came out of that.
Her admittance to Life U’s D.C. program came in before her answer from the physiotherapy school did, so she took a leap of faith to move to Marietta, Georgia and began the path to becoming a chiropractor.
“The students and staff here are a lot more community oriented. I find with other universities that I have been to, there is a lot of competition between everybody, and it’s sort of a standard for you to be in this percentile of the class; whereas, I feel like at Life U, everyone is helping each other constantly,” Smith remarked.
She came to Life U with high expectations, given that the two Life U alumni chiropractors she had worked with had told her all about the supportive atmosphere and high academic value offered at Life U, but Smith found the community support to be “the best part of her time here [at Life U] for sure.”
Her advice to new students is to simply be open to new experiences and have an open mind, because “you never know when you might find your people, your technique.”
‘There are a lot of smart people here with a lot of great things to teach you, so if you come in with a closed mind in the way that you are thinking already, you are going to miss out on those opportunities to learn from other people,” Smith said.
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