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Getting the right look: PA2 Portraits

by on March 31, 2015


The Story

If you are friends with NYCC students, you’ve seen it already.

This time every year, the pages of Facebook overflow with pictures of blue-coated, stethoscope brandishing doctors-in-training. Taking these pictures is a tradition for Dr. Maggie Finn, who teaches NYCC’s Patient Assessment Methods II class, part of the 5th trimester of our chiropractic education. The pictures mark the day that we must complete a full-body, multi-system physical exam, tying together a full semester of patient assessment practice in one 45-minute examination. Dr. Finn says that watching us demonstrate this range of clinical skills and professionality always makes her proud, so she wants to share that moment with our families and friends. “Frame it, give it to your mom on Mother’s Day, make her cry,” she instructed our class last April.


From top to bottom, “Palmer’s Angels,” “Awkward Prom,” and “Muscle Beach.”

From bromance to awkward prom poses, the variety of arrangements never ends. But there is one element that always seems to stay the same… the Snellen Eye Chart makes an appearance in every single one! It is essentially the only landmark to break the monotony of white walls, so it becomes everyone’s backdrop. Every single time.

It makes sense in the context of a class about full patient exams, but the PA2 Blue Coat Picture rises above just the context of one class! It is not every class that documents its every student, so these pictures become a representation of the entire pre-clinical education for many families. Doesn’t that make an eye chart an awkward focal point?

Like a spine, perhaps?

Like a spine, perhaps?

The Goal

This year, we will change that! We’ve started up a tiny fund to buy some new posters for Dr. Finn’s classroom. Donate a couple dollars, and between a bunch of us, we can add some attractive, subject-relevant posters.

Posters cost about $20 each. I will close this link when we have enough for 2-3, and if any money is left over from posters, we will donate it to another student project, like the campus Chiropractic History Collection display committee.

Or a kidney. Nephrology is everyone's favorite, right?

Or a kidney. Nephrology is everyone’s favorite, right?


Donations are now closed. After one week the posters were not funded through student efforts, though many thought it was a great idea.

Pictured: me sweating about the exam I'm about to perform.

Pictured: me sweating about the exam I’m about to perform. In front of an eye chart.

UPDATE 7/28:

NYCC took notice of this story, and quietly hung a chiropractic Caduceus in the classroom. Check out how classy and topical we look now!


History lesson: According to Nash and Keating, “Use of the winged angel with raised hands as a chiropractic emblem began circa 1928.” In the PA2 classroom, it began circa summer 2015. On behalf of future students, thanks to the school for this little tweak!


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