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Friday, February 21

Brookdale Newsroom

Therapy Dogs Help Students Prep for Exams

While most of the college community is enjoying this year’s spring break, half a dozen students in the Center for Career Development‘s Small Animal Massage Practitioner training program are busy preparing for their final exam.

On March 17 the students sat down with instructor Lola Michelin and four furry study buddies in the ATeC building to practice their skills before taking a practical certification on Friday.

For the remainder of the week, three Labradors and a terrier from Bright and Beautiful Therapy Dogs will selflessly allow themselves to be massaged and managed by the class.

While entertaining, the exercise was also a valuable opportunity for the students to apply the skills they have learned throughout the 200-hour training program.

Julie Kaplan and Abril Bennett practice their massage skills on a terrier on March 17.

Julie Kaplan and Abril Bennett practice their massage skills on a terrier on March 17.

“It’s a big help,” said student Abril Bennett. “We’re able to get some hands on experience before taking the practical.”

Julie Kaplan, taking a break from massaging her assigned terrier, said she was excited for the opportunity to earn a professional certificate and embark on a new career in animal health care.

“I’m an animal lover, and I love dogs in particular,” said Kaplan, who previously worked as therapist. “I just wanted to learn more about animal massage so that I could possibly pursue this as a career.”

Click here to learn more about the Animal Massage certificate program at Brookdale.

Check out more photos of the therapy dogs here.