Category: University News

Community Outreach with the Hemophilia Foundation: Newsletter, May 2022

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Earlier last month a group of Five Branches University students and faculty went to the beautiful campus of St Claries’ Retreat Center in Soquel, CA. St. Claire Resort was hosting the members and families of the Female Factor Retreat which is part of the Hemophilia Foundation of Northern California.

Five Branches students lead by FBU faculty, Dr. Mariposa Bernstein, were there to offer acupuncture, ear seeds and tuina-massage treatments to the participants.

Senior Student, Ursula Ehrhart, said “The participants expressed their gratitude exclaiming that our mobile unit was the highlight of their weekend.” “This event was the first introduction of Chinese medicine and acupuncture to most attendees,” said Lisa Fortes-Schramm, ND. one of the soon to graduate FBU students.

At the same time, FBU students are not exposed to treating patients suffering from bleeding disorders such as hemophilia at the University teaching clinic. However, the thin acupuncture needles were proven to be highly effective in pain reduction with minimal side effects even when applied to hemophilic patients.

Anya May King-Gunning, a graduating student, commented that “treating patients in such a communal manner was a bonding experience for me and my fellow classmates, as we were primarily confined to online learning due to the pandemic.”

A Celebratory Gathering

As the Spring of 2022 term ends, students had a spontaneous celebratory gathering with family and friends at Twin Lake Beach, just across from the Santa Cruz campus. Some of the graduating students had fun practicing graduation while wearing their gowns.

Special Edition: Alumni Journey: Newsletter, August 2021

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If you want to be a professional, you have to continue to study and improve your skills. Love what you do. Then do what you love.

— A video captured in Summer 2016, when Dr. He talked to a group of our students in the Risk Management Seminar held in our San Jose campus, sharing his insights on the qualities and actions that make a good doctor.

We are pleased to interview our sports medicine professor and alum of Five Branches’ doctorate program, Dr. Frank He, LAc QME DAOM, on August 19th at 5pm.

Whether you are an acupuncturist or part of the general public, sign up here to enjoy this “Alumni Journeys” webinar for free!

Frank He has taught at Five Branches for decades, completed his Doctor of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine degree in 2012, and is a Qualified Medical Examiner (QME) in the state of California (one of just a few actively practicing Acupuncturist-QMEs among over 10,000 acupuncturists).

His expertise has been sought for numerous local and national publications – particularly in the areas of sports medicine, stress management, and seniors’ health. You will get a chance to ask both Dr. He and alum Marc Velez, LAc QME, questions about what made them choose Chinese Medicine, challenges they face in hospital practice versus private practice, and tips for thriving as a professional.

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TCM Trial Courses Available Now

Connect with us and Access Trial Course Videos:
Upon filling in your information to sign up below, you will have the opportunity to connect with FBU administration who will be able to answer any questions you may have. In addition, you will be able to receive exclusive recordings of FBU courses.

Trial Course Videos Available:

Foundations I with Assistant Professor Juan Li (Chinese audio):
The Five Zang and the Six Fu organs all have their own unique functions, maintaining the normal functioning of these organs is the best way to maintain one’s health. The Five Zang organs include: the heart, the lungs, the spleen, the liver, and the kidneys. This trial course introduces the spleen of the Five Zang. In TCM theory, the spleen is the key organ to digest nutrients. It holds a crucial role in transforming, transporting, and distributing essences for the whole body. The spleen also dislikes coldness and dampness. In this excerpt, FBU assistant professor Juan Li discusses ways we can keep coldness and dampness at bay to keep our spleen healthy through dietetics.

Foundations II with Instructor Nicholas Hancock:
How can environmental conditions affect functions of the human body under the perspective of TCM? According to Chinese Medicine Theories, There are exterior invasions and interior diseases. Exterior invasions invade the body form the outside and lead to diseases whereas interior diseases stem from the yin yang imbalance of the organs within the body. There are Six Evils (Liuyin) which dwell within our living environments and can invade our bodies exteriorly, they include: Wind, cold, heat, damp, dryness, and fire. The Six Evils cause diseases when our bodies fail to have harmonious relationships with the environment. Listen to FBU Instructor Nicholas Hancock as he elaborates why and how the Six Evils can have adverse effects upon our health. 

Foundations II with Assistant Professor Juan Li (Chinese audio):
In TCM theory, when our bodies cannot adapt to have a harmonious relationship with the environment we live in, we are easily susceptible to the effects of exterior invasions of the 6 Evils (Liuyin), which hinder our bodily functions and cause diseases. There are different ways these diseases can progress in the human body and Traditional Chinese Medicine has developed several theories including The Six Stages of Shang Han Lun and The Four Levels of Wen Bing Lun to analyze such progression. In this video, FBU assistant professor Juan Li discusses how exterior invasions can progress depending on factors such as our constitution. Professor Li will also dive into the specific clinical signs of each stage or level of disease according to their respective theory.

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Learn from Experts, Become an Expert: Newsletter, July 2021

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Join our esteemed faculty as we discuss significant highlights of the book that brought so many of us to acupuncture in the first place: The Web That Has No Weaver by Harvard professor Ted Kaptchuk.

Whether you are an intrigued novice or a seasoned professional, explore with us the basis for Chinese Medicine from its earliest history to present day, picking up helpful tips acupuncturists share along the way.

Sign up here!
You can download a free copy of the book here,
and join our President & CEO Ron Zaidman as he leads the panel on Zoom 9/23/21 at 5pm. We look forward to your questions and insights.

Simple Summer Soup

This one is easy; all you actually need to ‘do’ is chop chicken and a few veggies; add some organic canned items and the stove does the rest!

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[09/17/2021] Constitution Day 2021

Where: Five Branches University

When: September 17th, 2021 – All Day

 In 1952, President Harry S. Truman signed a bill that moved I Am an American Day from the third Sunday in May to September 17. Truman did so in order for the holiday to coincide with the date of the signing of the U.S. Constitution in 1787. Congress renamed the holiday Citizenship Day.

A joint resolution passed in 1956 requested that the president proclaim the week beginning September 17 and ending September 23 each year as Constitution Week. In 2004, Senator Robert C. Byrd of West Virginia entered an amendment to the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2005 to change the name of the September 17 holiday to Constitution Day and Citizenship Day. The purpose of Constitution Day and Citizenship Day is to commemorate the creation and signing of the supreme law of the land and to honor and celebrate the privileges and responsibilities of U.S. citizenship for both native-born and naturalized citizens.

Learn more about Constitution Day from the Center for Civic Education!

Be The Change You Wish To See In Healthcare: Newsletter, June 2021

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Happening This Month:

  • TCM Webinar 2021: Herbal Medicine from Growing to Cooking (by Sr. Professor Bill Schoenbart): Sign Up Here
  • Online Open House for Fall 2021 Enrollment: Chart Your Path to a New Normal (Featured: Clinical Training Program at Five Branches/ Prof. George Lu): Sign Up Here

    Follow us for the announcement on
    school website, Youtube, and Facebook

Spotlight on Our Graduates: Setareh Moafi

In 2003, Setareh Moafi transitioned from co-founder of Yoga of Los Altos to a trajectory of personal healing that led her to Five Branches University to study Traditional Chinese Medicine a subject she knew nothing about. Her interest piqued originally when she began to explore the intersection between yoga and acupuncture. 

While still a student at Five Branches University, Setareh began her PhD program in Classical Chinese Medicine with 88th generation Daoist Grandmaster Dr. Jeffrey Yuen. Through his classes Dr. Setareh connected with her now husband and partner, Salvador Cefalu, MS, LAc. Together they run an award-winning clinic in the heart of Silicon Valley that specializes in Classical Chinese Medicine and Japanese acupuncture.

Always guided by a desire to be a gentle, intuitive healer, Dr. Setareh is now happy to interweave her practices of Chinese medicine and yoga into an advanced yoga teacher training she developed in 2018. She also teaches clients in empowerment coaching sessions. Now more than ever, Dr. Setareh is inspired by her mission to combine the ancient practices of Chinese medicine and yoga into accessible, modern tools for self-healing.

… Continue reading

Boosting Patients’ Immune systems: Newsletter, May 2021

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Spotlight on Our Graduates: Kieran Jones

“I can’t believe it’s been more than ten years since I graduated from Five Branches University,” says Kieran Jones, who practices in Petaluma and Cotati, California. He describes his clinics’ successes intertwined with plenty of setbacks. In his own words here are the most important ways to cultivate success in our field.
 “Most of the success I’ve enjoyed has been from being in the right place at the right time. When opportunities arose, I was lucky in that I was in a position that allowed me to take advantage of them.  Most recently, when Covid-19 strained the sustainability of most clinics, we were lucky in that we could be flexible and act on opportunities that presented. We had in the past gotten a few patients through worker’s compensation referrals from local physicians. When all of our cash patients stayed home for a year we were able to pivot to develop this established referral stream. We kept the lights on by taking care of our essential workers injured on the job. It worked better than expected. In September we broke our previous income record.”

Kieran tells us, “The main advice I’d have for anyone trying to make a go in this business is to try and position yourself such that when a new opportunity arises you’re able to take advantage of it. Give yourself options and hold capital and time in reserve.” Doing this, he says, and keeping yourself mentally rested, will help you “Act and not react.”

… Continue reading

Reducing Covid-19 Anxiety: Newsletter, April 2021

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Reducing Covid-19 Anxiety

Our Exclusive Webinars April 17 & 24

Please join us for a short complimentary webinar on reducing general pandemic anxiety (Sat., April 17), and tips for TCM practitioners to treat Post-Covid19 syndrome (Sat., April 24). Living through this pandemic has numerous effects, whether you personally were affected by Covid or not. Our familial and community vulnerabilities hit home this last year, and economic insecurity has long-lasting effects as well.
Come learn

  • What the source of most stress actually is
  • Traditional Chinese Medicine herbs and points to treat Post-Covid19 symptoms
  • Answers to your questions at our Q&A!

Watch the trailer: April Webinar: COVID-19 and Anxiety

… Continue reading

Careers Open to Acupuncturists: Newsletter, March 2021

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Many Careers are Open to Acupuncturists

Did you know there are a multitude of career opportunities for acupuncturists, including starting your own private practice, joining an integrative medical facility, getting hired at Kaiser or Sutter or Modern Acupuncture, getting hired at a spa or yoga studio, teaching at a university, working at an herbal dispensary, or even traveling the world to assist in dire situations for Acupuncturists Without Borders?

Our practitioners are equipped with paramount levels of education for acupuncture, herbal formulation, Chinese dietary advice, and even marketing skills, so you can get started on your career path right away.

We encourage you to consider what type of practice you might want to have once you are an acupuncturist (and keep in mind our DTCM/DAOM/Bridge Doctoral programs offer added benefits since employers often prefer more initials after your name)! Visit Paths to TCM for more information on the many different transformations your career can take, and has already taken our alumni.

… Continue reading

Education Continues: Newsletter, February 2021

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Education Continues During A Pandemic

Embracing the safety and the well-being of students and faculty in providing patient-care, education at FBU continues with high safety measures and careful adoption of various formats, including online education to achieve teaching objectives to promote upkeep of clinical skills and knowledge.
RSVP to discover! On February 21 at 2pm Pacific time, join us for

  • General information about the program
  • A graduate and a senior student testimonials
  • Clinic operation in light of the COVID-19 regulations
  • Small groups for Q & A

… Continue reading

Newsletter & Happy New Year, January 2021

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New Year’s Resolution: Stress Less

This year as we celebrate switching over to 2021 with just our own company or with our small ‘pod’ of folks, let us try to bring in extra warmth and acceptance after a very difficult time. If you generally feel extra stress during darker and chillier months, consider adding these to your self-care regimen:

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Telemedicine Services

For Appointment setting, please

San Jose (408) 260-8868
Santa Cruz (831) 476-8211

9:30 AM to 5:00 PM Monday through Friday
Or, We will Call You Upon Your Request:

We now offer Phone and Video Appointments.



  • Five Branches is expanding Telephone Appointments and Video Appointments
  • You can now LiveChat or phone call with our service staffs and practitioners
  • Please call our Call Center from 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM Monday through Friday. Phone numbers: Santa Cruz (831) 476-8211 or San Jose (408) 260-8868


    • If you are having a medical or psychiatric emergency, please dial 911 or go to the nearest hospital immediately.
    • Existing appointments may be rescheduled to telephone or video appointments
    • Both the private clinic and the teaching clinic are available with Telemedicine services.

Stop AAPI Hate

Five Branches University, Graduate School of Traditional Chinese Medicine, joins together to support our Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community members against the recent waves of hate crimes, burglaries, assaults and insults towards the AAPI community.

Five Branches University builds on and is dedicated to the culture, knowledge and skills of Traditional Chinese Medicine. We have invited hundreds of Asian and Asian American faculty, have graduated hundreds of Asian and Asian American students and employ dozens of Asian American staff. We respect and owe deep gratitude to Asian culture and the AAPI community.

We write in response to the current global wave of prejudice, and in support of the communities dedicated to fighting against oppression, and for justice and equality for all. Five Branches University is committed to an inclusive University for all. Hateful speech or actions expressed against any group based on their race, ethnicity, gender or gender identification, or national origin have no place at Five Branches at any time. If a member of our community experiences discrimination, please seek assistance by contacting the University Dean.

Phone: (831) 476-9424 x207

The Charm of Our Santa Cruz Campus

Five Branches University has two campuses that lie about forty miles apart. The Santa Cruz Campus is located just a block from the ocean. It’s just a short walk to Twin Lakes State Beach. The San Jose Campus is in north San Jose, the largest city of the innovative Silicon Valley.

Join Our Events

We allow students to take classes at both campuses. This gives you a lot of flexibility as far as timing. If you need to work, and the class that you need is taught at the other campus at a better time that is more convenient for you, you can do it. It’s just that you need to declare a home campus and then you have to take the majority of your classes in that home campus. But if occasionally you need to take the class at the other campus, then you can definitely do that.” … Continue reading

Earn Your Doctorate and Masters at the same time

Five Branches University now offers its new Doctor of Traditional Chinese Medicine and its Master of Traditional Chinese Medicine as a dual degree – DTCM/MTCM. This allows students to complete a single 4-year program, and earn both the Doctoral and Master’s upon graduation. The DTCM/MTCM Dual-Degree minimizes study time, grants financial aid, and allows students to sit for both the California licensing and National certification exams.

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Preparing Your Enrollment Application Packet


Only International applicants whose native language is not English are required to provide proof of English proficiency for admission to degree, certificate, and non-degree graduate programs.

We have created and published videos that will help you complete your Application Packet with us at Five Branches University . If you have any specific questions or trouble with the forms, please feel free to email the admissions department at or give us a call at (408) 260-0208 ext. 217. … Continue reading

Newsletter & Seasonal Greetings, December 2020

Seasonal Greetings from Five Branches University

Chinese Medicine to Soothe COVID Anxiety

To put it mildly, 2020 has been a strange and challenging time for all of us here in the U.S. and around the world. One year ago scientists became aware of the first cases of the novel coronavirus, and the global infection rate led to so many months of isolation and permeating fear it is difficult to recall what life was like before. Remember you are not alone if you harbor a deep wariness from this pandemic. Hopefully your anxiety has decreased over time, while you have also stayed vigilant about prevention. … Continue reading

The State of Five Branches University during the Covid-19 Pandemic

Five Branches University is closely monitoring COVID-19. This is a rapidly evolving situation and we are doing everything in our power to support those who are affected including students, patients, faculty, staff and the general public. Below you will find what we are doing in each sector of our campus to ensure the safety of everyone involved in Five Branches University and Health Services.

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Military Veterans, An Opportunity to Study TCM and Acupuncture

If you or your dependent is a veteran with an undergraduate degree, Five Branches University makes education accessible to you.  Our DTCM/MTCM program offers Traditional Chinese Medicine(TCM) and Acupuncture degree, academic classes and clinical training included and the Post-9/11 GI Bill®, and Yellow Ribbon can be arranged to cover your tuition fees and other benefits.

To get started, please read our Veteran Education Policies. For specific questions, fill out our contact form and an Admission Adviser will contact you.  We are glad to talk with you about the benefits eligibility, financial aid, and how to navigate the admissions process.

At Five Branches University, our top priority is to prepare our graduates to become exceptional practitioners of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Our nationally accredited degree programs provide students with a strong foundation in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) diagnosis, acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, the latest TCM research, extensive clinical training, and comprehensive education in integrative medicine.

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Acupuncture School on Point!

Nothing proves the point more sharply than a well-placed needle, a well thought out treatment strategy, and a quickly recovered patient.

“What was the most amazing thing that you have witnessed with acupuncture?” the person lying face down had just learned that I am a student of Chinese Medicine at Five Branches University and that I had practiced acupuncture in Johannesburg, South Africa, for almost twenty years. … Continue reading

Coronavirus: TCM Prevention Against Infection

Watch the video archived

Lunchtime Student Forum:
Coronavirus: Traditional Chinese Medicine Prevention Against Infection
– Prepared for the TCM Students and Practitioners

Live Broadcast on Facebook and YouTube.
Time: 12:00pm noontime, March 2nd, 2020

To watch more about about our Online Seminar, Please subscribe our channel

A Chinese Proverb says, “The superior doctor prevents sickness…”.
In face of the Coronavirus outbreak, what role can TCM play in prevention and treatment? What measures can be taken to reduce the chances of infection? Learn how to take better care of yourself and your patients.
… Continue reading

Standing Together

Dear Five Branches University Colleagues 

In these uncertain times, our nation is faced with multiple crisis all at once. In the wake of George Floyds murder by Minneapolis police, there has been a worldwide outpouring of remorse and rage at the perpetuation of anti-Black violence and discrimination from all corners of American society and institutions. Coupled with the challenge of the global pandemic, which has disproportionately impacted the Black community in the United States, we are shocked. Five Branches University fully supports the Black Lives Matter movement. We demand changes for equal rights and justice. We need fundamental change in culture to manifest this. … Continue reading

Paths to TCM

Whether or not you have a background in healthcare, our program strives to equip students with Traditional Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture knowledge required for competent care and management of modern patients. Who are those studying at Five Branches University? What motivates them to invest their time in learning Traditional Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture? Catch a glimpse of our student and alumni population. Get inspired by the experiences they have and begin where you’re at!

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Experience Five Branches 2019

Five Branches University has been at the forefront of Traditional Chinese Medicine education and clinical services in the San Francisco Bay Area for thirty-five years. We provide winning opportunities to advance your knowledge in Traditional Chinese Medicine where you could start an amazing career, or simply benefit yourself and your loved ones.
Come find your unique experience in Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine. Grab your free spot now; spots are limited.

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Enrollment Info Session for 2019 Spring (Online Video)

Watch the webinar on YouTube Streaming

Introducing our new DTCM/MTCM Dual-Degree Program: Through a single program, earn your Doctor of Traditional Chinese Medicine and Master of Traditional Chinese Medicine (DTCM/MTCM) Dual-Degree and become a licensed acupuncturist and herbalist. Students earn the Doctorate degree, and are given the Master’s degree that is required to sit for State and National licensing and certification exams.
… Continue reading

Sterling TCM Clinicians, Effective Treatment To The Point.

The twelve-year-old girl who came in to see Dr Julie Zhu at the Five Branches Clinic was faced with not just the challenges endured by all the other girls of her age, she had had the added stress, trauma and fear as a result of things going horribly , horribly wrong.

For many young girls, the arrival of their first menstrual period can be a bewildering and frightening experience which foists upon them a whole range of challenges and changes.

Puberty is a daunting time for any teenager, the way one’s body changes, the awkwardness, the clumsiness, the embarrassment of sexual changes and sexual awakening confuse and challenge their  self image and sense of identity. … Continue reading

Doctor & Senior Professor Lucy Hu, LAc: A Life Dedicated to Service

Twenty-seven years later, Dr. Lucy Hu is still teaching at Five Branches University and treating patients in the university’s health clinics, her private clinic in Palo Alto, and consulting with Stanford University pediatricians on difficult cases. She is the embodiment of the hero physician, tirelessly pursuing excellence to be of service to so many in need.
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Cupping Therapy: An Ancient Chinese Therapeutic Technique With Modern Day Efficacy

The popularity of cupping has recently exploded with the recent images of Olympians, most notably USA swimming star Michael Phelps, covered in several dark colored circles on their bodies. Besides looking like they were attacked by giant octopi, these elite Olympic athletes and their trainers provide anecdotal evidence that it aids in post workout recovery, rehabilitates injured muscles, and most importantly, gives them a competitive advantage by allowing them to be in optimal physical fitness. Let’s go a little deeper than the superficiality of these marks and testimonials and look at the history and context behind this ancient East Asian medical modality. … Continue reading

Partnership with leading TCM Pharmaceutical

Five Branches University is proud to announce a partnership with Sun Ten Pharmaceutical. Five Branches University and Sun Ten Pharmaceutical signed a Cooperative Letter of Intent stating this partnership which will see an increase in teaching faculty from this California and Taiwan-based TCM Pharmacy. Both parties agree to cooperate in the development of clean herbal medicine which includes proper cultivation, development, safety against pollutants and heavy metals, regulation, education, internships for our students and alumni as well as future employment.

By partnering with Sun Ten Pharmaceutical, Five Branches University is looking to be the leader of education in TCM Herbology in addition to many other of the traditional modalities such as Acupuncture, Tui Na Massage, Qigong, and Dietary Therapy. TCM Herbology is as important as any of these other modalities and is part of our five branches. … Continue reading

Earn Your Doctorate and Masters at the same time

Thank you, everyone, for your passion and excitement for Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine. We had a wonderful open house this past weekend on Saturday, July 23rd and on Sunday, July 24th. We hope that you enjoyed your visit with us. Whether you were able to attend, or if you were unable to, here are some great photos that we are thrilled to share.

… Continue reading

The Forerunners of East West Integrative Medicine

“No matter what flavor of medical evolution we take on—all of us are graduating bilingual. We are versed in both eastern and western medicine, we are the forerunners to communicate and utilize both languages—to bridge the gap and bring the medical integration of east and west to full fruition in our country.”

“We are graduating from a rigorous training, unique to California and Five Branches University, of a 32-hundred hour program. Did you know that we are not only graduating as Traditional Chinese Medical practitioners with expertise in Acupuncture, Herbology, Massage, Qi Gong, and Diet & Nutrition? We are also graduating as Primary Care Physicians. Again, We are the ones walking the line between both medicines. We are those who are filling the gap, to bridge all worlds, one by one.”

— Melinda Phoenix, 2016 Graduation Commencement Speech

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Faculty Snapshots

Selected from a community of prominent Traditional Chinese Medicine and Western medicine practitioners, teachers, authors and international lecturers in the United States, China and Taiwan, the faculty at FBU is dedicated to being at the forefront of teaching and provide a supportive learning environments, both in academic and clinical experiences for students to graduate as competent TCM practitioners.

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An Interview with Sarah Holloway, ND

For the second installment of our FBU student, alumni & faculty profile series, we sat down with senior Five Branches student and Naturopathic doctor, Sarah Holloway, at Twin Lakes beach to learn what it takes to be an Integrative Medicine practitioner in 2016.


“I feel like Chinese medicine gives me a great way to treat patients with chronic and complex illnesses because it provides a strong and scaffolded structure in which to categorize symptoms. When patients come in with conditions where no immediate diagnosis can be given, or a definitive answer of what they have and how to treat the condition, you really have to back up, look at the tissue states, the nuances of the presenting disease, examine whether there is excess or deficiency, hot or cold and start from there. It’s best to begin with just balancing what you see out of balance today, because if you try to fix the whole thing at once it can be overwhelming.”

… Continue reading

An interview with Caroline Wilkerson

In this series, we meet with current students and alumni to get a deeper look into why they chose to study Chinese Medicine at Five Branches and dedicate their lives to being of service to those in need of high quality, holistic healthcare.

[Editor]] Hi Caroline, it’s great to meet with you today and learn a little bit more about you. Do you mind telling us a little bit about your background?

[Caroline] Hi, of course. My name is Caroline Wilkerson. I grew up Illinois. When I was 22, I joined the US Navy as a Crypto-linguistic analyst. I went to the Monterey Peninsula Defense Language Institute to learn Russian and then later Chinese. I moved to Hawaii to further learn Chinese language and culture with the Navy. While studying Chinese language and culture I fell in love with it. So many of my teachers were amazing. That was such a great experience. That was where I started digging deeper into Chinese Medicine and learning more. … Continue reading

Highland Hospital Welcomes FBU Students in Residency Program

Five Branches University students complete clinical residency requirements alongside Western medical students in outpatient and inpatient rounds.

The Picture above shows Ms. Angela Tu, LAc, Five Branches University Board Chair and Dr Amy Matecki, ICMI President and Chief of Integrative Medicine at Highland Hospital, surrounded by students of Five Branches University during hospital residency.
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The Making of a TCM Doctor

The first U.S. hospital residency, numerous clinical externships, and two university health centers train Five Branches University students to be the best primary care doctors.

“In addition to the clinical training at the Five Branches University health centers, we provide offsite acupuncture and Chinese medicine treatments to patients at the Mental Health Client Action Network, to individuals with HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis C at the Santa Cruz AIDS Project, to elderly patients at the Akiyama Wellness Center, as well as onsite veterans and community clinics. These exceptional clinical externships have prepared us Highland Acupuncture Residents with the skills and training necessary to deal with conditions ranging from colds & flus, pain, chronic illness and degenerative diseases to stress, insomnia, mental health and reproductive health disorders.”

… Continue reading

First TCM Pharmacy School in America

Our new program will offer courses that fill crucial gaps in practitioner knowledge. The focus will center on topics related to herbal quality control and cultivation, with additional courses on clinical and cultural topics. Courses on quality control will cover identification, quality discernment, and safety concerns related to Chinese herbal medicines, with attention to traditional macroscopic assessment as well as microscopy and analytical testing techniques.

Five Branches University is honored to announce that we have partnered with three prestigious institutions from China, and Hong Kong to inaugurate the first TCM Pharmacy School in the United States specializing in Chinese herbal pharmacy and quality control. … Continue reading

Medi-Cal Ups Acupuncture Payments For Addiction

Medi-Cal supports acupuncture for the treatment of pain to address problem of opioids

Five Branches University of Traditional Chinese Medicine completes a successful pilot program with the Central California Alliance for Health examining the efficacy of acupuncture & Traditional Chinese Medicine for pain management. Results allow Medi-Cal patients to use acupuncture instead of opioids and reimbursement rates to acupuncturists double.

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Five Branches University Ranked the Best Acupuncture School in Northern California

Based on a peer review among ACAOM (Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine) accredited schools in the US, Five Branches University was ranked as the best acupuncture school in Northern California and the second best in the state of California.
The ranking is based on the following criteria:

  1. Quality of academic curriculum, faculty and comprehensiveness of the program. Consider the program’s components in acupuncture, Oriental medicine, herbal medicine and western medicine.
  2. Quality of clinical education, including quality of the faculty, clinic, the herbal pharmacy, clinical externships and clinical community service opportunities.

… Continue reading

Five Branches University Launches New Doctor of Traditional Chinese Medicine (DTCM) Program

Starting in Spring 2016, students entering Five Branches University to become Licensed Acupuncturists and Herbalists will earn the Doctor of Traditional Chinese Medicine degree. Students will also be granted the Master of Traditional Chinese Medicine degree in order to sit for the National and State Certification and Licensing exams.

With this development, the profession of Traditional Chinese Medicine joins other healthcare professions with an entry-level first professional doctorate degree — such as MD’s, DC’s, and ND’s.
… Continue reading

Five Branches University Offers Residency Internship at Highland Hospital in Oakland

Beginning January 14, 2016 Five Branches students will join LAc’s, MD’s and western medicine students in residency training in both the outpatient clinic and the inpatient wards in Highland Hospital, a leading community hospital in Oakland, California. This residency has been six years in the making and marks an important milestone for TCM students to receive hospital training. Students will receive orientations on hospital procedures and will have the opportunity to observe the treatment of hundreds of patients in outpatient and inpatient settings. We anticipate that this experience will open many doors for work after graduation.
… Continue reading

The World Health Organization Meets at Five Branches University for Field Trials on New ICD-11 Traditional Medicine Codes

On December 10, Five Branches University is honored to host the World Health Organization (WHO) at our San Jose campus for the field trials of the new ICD-11 codes which will include ™ Codes (Traditional Medicine).

ICD codes, the International Classifications of Diseases codes, is the international standard diagnostic tool for epidemiology, health management and clinical purposes. The ICD is maintained by the World Health Organization (WHO), the directing and coordinating authority for health within the United Nations System.
… Continue reading

2015 Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine is granted to a Chinese Medical researcher

Groundbreaking and historical news for the Traditional Chinese Medicine community. For the first time in history, the Nobel Prize committee has granted an award to a Traditional Chinese Medicine researcher, Dr. Youyou Tu, for her work in Physiology and Medicine.

In response to failing Malaria treatments,  Dr. Tu and her team from the China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences in Beijing created an effective alternative treatment using the Chinese herb Artemisia annua (Qing Hao Su 青蒿素). You can read more about this exciting development by clicking on the link provided:
… Continue reading

A Great Place To Become A Doctor & Acupuncturist

Thank you everyone for your passion and excitement for Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine. We had a wonderful open house this past weekend on Saturday, July 23rd and on Sunday, July 24th. We hope that you enjoyed your visit with us. Whether you were able to attend, or if you you were unable to, here are some great photos that we are thrilled to share.

For those of you considering to apply for the Fall or Spring Trimester, there is still time to send in your application before the start of the term. Contact an admissions representative for further details on becoming a Five Branches student!

… Continue reading

Five Branches University Students Awarded Henan TCM University Scholarship

Five Branches University is one of only three TCM universities in the U.S. that were awarded the opportunity to receive a scholarship for advanced clinical studies in Henan, China.

This Chinese government sponsored scholarship is offered through Henan TCM University.  The University was founded in 1958 and is located in Zhengzhou, the capital city of Henan province (north of Beijing).  It is one of the earliest established TCM universities in China and is the base for international promotion of Chinese culture and TCM including the qualification test department and education base of World Federation of Acupuncture-Moxibustion Societies. … Continue reading