Experiential Education

An experiential model for education is based on the recognition that true learning emerges in the context of opportunities to personally and actively engage in the subject matter being studied. Professional training at HeartSong is grounded in an experiential approach to clinical skill development for naturopathic medical students. The internship experience includes all four phases of natural learning -- personal direct experience, observation and reflection, theory-building, and active experimentation.

Authentic Practice

Medical students at HeartSong are invited to realize their highest potential as human beings while honing professional skills. All activities and interactions at HeartSong's clinic are considered sadhana -- "spiritual practice" (in Sanskrit) -- for the physician. Students are encouraged to discover their own authentic practice of naturopathy by using all experience as an opportunity to deepen consciousness through increased self-awareness and self-understanding.


Mentoring refers to a professional partnership through which one person -- a mentor -- shares knowledge, skills, information and insight to foster the personal and professional development of another. The partnership offers a unique opportunity for collaboration, personal growth, goal fulfillment, and problem-solving for both people in the relationship. Medical students at HeartSong receive support and guidance while providing assistance in patient care and practice management.

Nonprofit Primary Care in a Medical Home

Preceptoring at HeartSong offers medical students an opportunity to observe naturopathic primary care practiced in a unique setting since HeartSong is (1) the only 501(c)(3) medical clinic in the United States (to the best of our knowledge) and (2) the first naturopathic practice currently scheduled for scoring by the National Committee for Quality Assurance as a Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH). Medical students witness the wide range of medical and administrative activities occurring in a PCMH.

Learn More

Herbal Seva Work Exchange

This is a new offering at HeartSong in 2013. In 2012, we began the construction of a series of gardens -- Ganesh Gardens -- at HeartSong with the intention of creating medicinal herb, organic vegetable, and healing gardens to be used for educational purposes in a variety of ways. We are still designing beds and setting perennial plants, in addition to planting annual crops, harvesting, making fresh plant medicines, and designing educational programs which include components about home medicinal plants growing, medicine-making, organic vegetable growing and cooking.

In eastern spiritual traditions, seva (selfless service) refers to freely offering one's energy and expertise for the benefit of others for the purpose of deepening self-awareness and achieving personal mastery. We would like to welcome one person every summer for a seva work exchange, where the volunteer helps us create and maintain a viable educational community resource for promoting sustainable medicine and skillful self-care among people who come to HeartSong and, through the process, comes to find deeper personal and spiritual fulfillment in their own work in naturopathic medicine.

Learn More

Educational Opportunities for Naturopathic Medical Students and Recent Graduates


HeartSong welcomes third and fourth year naturopathic medical students, in addition to recent graduates who have not yet taken their NPLEX exams, who wish to support and learn from a nonprofit naturopathic primary care in a small rural organization dedicated to improving access to natural medicine for populations at risk for disparities in health care -- women, children, teens, people of color, differently-abled people, people with limited financial resources, people with cultural and/or gender identities that are marginalized in the U.S., nonnative English speakers, residents of small rural communities, and the elderly.



Five-day programs (Sunday-Thursday) with participation in select clinic activities.

Click here for requirements and application instructions

Herbal Seva Work Exchange

12-16 week work exchange for helping to develop and maintain Ganesh Gardens during the summer months. Prerequisite: Five-day preceptorship at HeartSong.

Click here for requirements and application instructions