Master of Science in Herbal Medicine
"Tai Sophia's gift to our culture is an academic degree that's rooted in oneness. The school is transformational." Georganne (Geo) Derick remembers that when she was a child, her grandfather - a pharmacist trained in the 1920s - taught her to pick berries and soak them in alcohol to make medicines. Later, she took her first job watering flowers at a garden center. She loved working with plants. At that time, though, she never thought of making a living of it, and went on to pursue a "serious degree" in English and cultural anthropology. After considering a graduate degree in medical anthropology, Geo decided to work with her mother in the family business, taking on the role of president in their interior design firm.
Then, when a relative gave her a gift of land in 1998, she decided that it was on the land, with nature, that she wanted to make her living. "I wanted to live my joy. And when I thought about what that meant for me, I realized it was about being with people and with nature. I'm happiest outside in the garden and in my kitchen making things." So when Geo's acupuncturist and masseuse, a Tai Sophia graduate, told her about the Institute's new botanical program in 2000, she began to craft her life toward making a living of her joy. As she moved forward to what she truly loved, she saw her life working well. Her coworkers urged her on, and, with her, opened their own eyes to the world of natural healing.
Now in her third year of the Herbal Medicine program, Geo smiles as she talks about her studies. She loves every bit of what she calls "an awesome and challenging program," from learning the Latin names of plants to research. Eventually she will open an office in her garden, wild-crafting herbs and formulating herbal products. Geo says that when people ask her, "What are you going to do with your degree?" she replies, "I am going to enjoy the rest of my life."