Amy Jo Howard
CH, CN, ND
As a child who loved to read, write, and ride bike outside, Amy Jo Howard didn’t realize she would grow up to be like both Nancy Drew and Florence Nightingale: two of her favorite women about whom she loved to read.
Amy Jo grew up in the country with her parents and younger sister near the small town of Blanchard, Michigan. During her school years, she was best known for winning spelling bees (she even went to the National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C.) and editing her friends’ English papers. After graduating from high school, Amy Jo went to Central Michigan University and received a Bachelor’s Degree in English and Psychology. When she wasn’t studying for her classes or working (she must have been doing this in her sleep?!), she enjoyed reading about herbs, crystals, yoga, energy work, and all different kinds of natural healing. Following graduation from CMU, Amy Jo was working full time at the public library when she discovered that Herbs Etc not only had the herbs that she liked to stop in and buy, but they offered free natural health classes on Tuesday nights!
So, Amy Jo became a regular at the Tuesday night classes, hungrily consuming all of these fun and amazing topics that expanded upon the information that she had self-studied; plus, they just innately made sense to her. Then, she learned that, within the same building, was the Naturopathic Institute of Therapies and Education (NITE): a school teaching a four year program in natural health. And, she thought, why not take these classes?!
Then, after completing her freshman year at NITE, Amy Jo transitioned from the library to working full time at Herbs Etc and NITE where she began seeing clients for natural health consultations and helping with various aspects of the school. She completed the four year program and received her Board Certified Naturopathic Doctor designation as well as graduating a homeopathy program to become a Certified Homeopath. Among her other credentials are PSYCH-K® Facilitator, Certified Colon Hydrotherapist, and Yoga Instructor. She also began instructing classes at the Institute, and now, some twenty years later, is the Director of Education at the Naturopathic Institute of Therapies and Education.
Among the classes that Dr. Howard loves to teach are: Biology, Iridology, Homeopathy I and II, Reflexology, CranioSacral Therapy, Advanced Muscle Testing and Amino Acids, and Advanced Reflexology, Meridian Work, and Hands on Techniques. One of Dr. Howard’s main goals when teaching is to make the material practical and applicable. She wants students to be able to take what they have learned and use it to help the people in their life – right away! Plus, learning is much easier when it’s memorable and fun, so including a variety of learning activities and taking regular dance party breaks are usually staples in her classroom.
During the week, Dr. Howard sees clients for natural health consultations, PSYCH-K® consultations, CranioSacral Therapy, Reflexology, and more. This is where the Nancy Drew part comes into play: every single person is an individual, and no matter what their symptoms are or what diagnoses they have received, how the body displays the imbalances is completely unique to that person. Dr. Howard loves “investigating” to discover the root issue of a client’s health concerns and empowering them with the knowledge and tools that they can then use to un-develop their state of dis-ease and reclaim their health.
Something that Dr. Howard has been incorporating into her consultations the past few years is PSYCH-K®. If you have ever read any of Bruce Lipton’s work (if you haven’t, you should definitely check him out!), then you know that he talks about epigenetics, and how the environment, including your thoughts and emotions, affect your health, even more so than the genetics that you have inherited. PSYCH-K® is one such tool to address how your mind impacts your well-being. It uses split brain research and techniques to encourage whole brain states in order to revise limiting beliefs. Sometimes, these beliefs are in the subconscious mind, and we’re not even aware of how much they are holding us back from achieving our goals, yet we can’t figure out why all of our hard work is not yielding the results we want to see. Doing this work with clients has given incredible results and has changed lives in amazing ways!
Plus, as the Director of Education at the Institute, Dr. Howard is honored to have a more direct impact working with the students and instructors, overseeing the curriculum, and continuing to ensure that the Institute offers the best natural health education possible. She is grateful for her own education and opportunities and wants to share that same spirit with others as the Institute moves forward. There is a delicate balance of remaining true to orthodox naturopathy and upholding those principles and at the same time, progressing forward with new information and technology and all of the changes taking place in society. And, as natural health gains more popularity, finding a way to blend new advancements into a learning environment where people are still rooted in the fundamental beliefs of true healing is a primary goal, especially as graduates embark upon their own journeys in the world.
When not in a consultation room or classroom, Amy Jo can be found wrangling two rambunctious dogs, reading ingredient labels (for fun!), working out, eating chocolate, and still reading, writing, and researching.