2024 DEAC Award Recipients at ACHS

Jun 17, 2024 10:15:00 AM | holistic health The 2024 DEAC Award Recipients: Kaitlyn Musick and Bonnie Pearce

Discover the inspiring journeys of ACHS's 2024 DEAC Award recipients, Kaitlyn Musick and Bonnie Pearce, excelling in integrative health.

ACHS is thrilled to announce the 2024 Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC) Award Recipients! This year’s Famous Alumni Award recipient is Kaitlyn Musick, and the Outstanding Graduate Award recipient is Bonnie Pearce

These accolades celebrate the exceptional achievements of graduates who have demonstrated outstanding dedication to their studies at ACHS and the integrative health community. Kaitlyn and Bonnie have demonstrated many remarkable accomplishments and a deep commitment to serving their communities. They were featured speakers in our annual Commencement ceremony on June 14th. Read on to learn more about their journeys and plans for the future!


Famous Alumni Award Recipient: Kaitlyn Musick

Kaitlyn Musick Famous AlumniKaitlyn Musick earned her Associate of Applied Science in Integrative Health Sciences from the American College of Healthcare Sciences in the spring of 2022. Her love of holistic health led her to ACHS, which has enabled her to build a career in auricular acupuncture, incorporating wellness protocols into her clients' journeys.

Kaitlyn stands out, not just for their dedication to her craft but for her unwavering commitment to holistic well-being. Her path to ACHS wasn't a conventional route; She didn't immediately wish to pursue higher education after high school. Instead, she ventured into the world of yoga, immersing herself in the practices of holistic living and discovering a profound connection to alternative medicine.

During the COVID pandemic, Kaitlyn saw an opportunity for personal growth and development. She sought a school that aligned with her values and was drawn to ACHS. After completing her program with honors, she began a job as an acupuncture assistant in a clinic and worked her way up to managing clients, seeing patients, and creating new wellness programs.  

In her role as a health practitioner at the Vail Valley Wellness Clinic, Katilyn combines both Eastern and Western medicine by incorporating tinctures, teas, salves, and more for clinic clients. She continues to seek education opportunities to deepen her knowledge and experience in holistic healing modalities while viewing the client as a whole person, not just a symptom. 

The education and expertise she gained through her studies at ACHS have helped Kaitlyn partner with a local nonprofit that provides community resources for those in recovery from mental health issues and addiction. She hosts a weekly community gathering called “Healthy Happy Hour,” which provides a safe space for its members to socialize and bond through healthy physical activities. She has also worked with fire departments in her area to bring acupuncture and holistic modalities to team members experiencing high stress levels.

Kaitlyn shares, “The skills learned at ACHS allow me to provide a holistic approach to my community by providing diet, physical activity, stress, and emotional health management guidelines. My experience at ACHS is at the forefront of my own lifestyle habits and all that I offer to my clients.”

Congratulations to Kaitlyn on her many accomplishments and for earning the Famous Alumni Award!


Outstanding Graduate Award Recipient: Bonnie Pearce

Bonnie Pearce Outstanding GraduateBonnie Pearce earned her Master of Science in Herbal Medicine from the American College of Healthcare Sciences in Spring of 2024. With a love for helping others and a passion for herbal medicine, she pursued her degree with the goal of starting an education center and farm for her community.

During her studies at ACHS, Bonnie was amazed at how she could help clients with various conditions through herbal medicine and nutrition. One of her goals is to expand the products offered at the Hærth Medicinal Farm she and her husband operate. She completed her program with honors and now has her sights set on creating an education center and providing a space where the community can gather, learn, grow, and experience life with herbal medicine as the cornerstone. 

A research paper in one of her ACHS courses led her to discover her love and knowledge of cultivating at-risk medicinal plants. After learning of various endangered species, she began researching and collecting cuttings and seeds for medicinal plants in her region. Her recent project, Michigan Protects, focuses on developing relationships with local park and forest districts, land owners, and businesses to protect native medicinal species across Michigan and the Northeast U.S. 

Bonnie has also completed the ACHS micro-credential of Certified Dietary Supplements Professional (CDSP)TM Exam Prep program. She is in the process of setting up her clinical practice and has plans to expand the products offered in her FDA/GMP-compliant lab along with community education opportunities to engage in medicinal plant protection.

Bonnie has created a diabetic wound formula, which was the subject of her capstone project. She is currently talking with a physicians-only supplement company and other potential partners to carry the product. She also earned two additional micro-credentials at ACHS and has recieved her certifications from NANP and NAHP. 

“Little did I know when I started my journey at ACHS where it would lead me,” Bonnie says. “The knowledge of herbal medicine and nutrition, along with the confidence obtained during my studies at ACHS, has led me to help people change their lifestyles, health, and outlook for the future." 

Bonnie continues to be a profound advocate for integrative health and community activism, and we're proud to name her the Outstanding Graduate Award recipient! Congratulations, Bonnie!

Graduate of ACHS Holistic Healthcare


This article is for informational purposes only. Please contact ACHS Admissions at admissions@achs.edu or 800-487-8839 for additional information and to apply for admission. Graduation from any ACHS program does not confer a license to practice medicine. ACHS graduates do not claim to treat, diagnose, cure, or prescribe. Please note that professional success is achieved by a number of factors beyond education and experience, including soft skills, work ethic, integrity, and other skills that may not be developed through education and training alone. Not all graduates will achieve the career outcomes provided as examples in this article and other ACHS marketing materials. 

American College of Healthcare Sciences

Written By: American College of Healthcare Sciences

ACHS's mission is to lead the advancement of evidence-based, integrative health and wellness education through experiential online learning and sustainable practices. This includes sharing helpful, informative, holistic healthcare articles on the ACHS Health and Wellness Blog.