Foreign MT moving into the states

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Ali
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Foreign MT moving into the states

Post by Ali » Sun Oct 05, 2014 6:45 pm

Hello everyone, Im so happy to have found this forum, i have so many questions i hope you can help me figure them out...
I am from Argentina, and currently live in Buenos Aires. have been working in my own private practice for 11 years now, and teaching a trigger point class for seven. I will be moving to the US next year because I have just been approved my residency in the States.
As far as i know from talking to different schools and the board of education, they will not transfer any credits for my previous education, or experience, because here in Argentina massage therapy is not a certified profession, so even though the school where i studied was amazing, it doesn´t have the government´s backup. I am certified in Esalen Massage, and have studied neuromuscular therapy and Zero Balancing in the States, but i know those credits are also non-transferrable.
My mother lives upstate NY which is also where i know the most people and could start working once i get my license. I plan to either live with her and commute to a nearby school which is about an hour and a half away (she´s two hrs away from NYC, and 5 mins away from Kent, CT). OR I could rent a room and study full time somewhere else.
I would like to get through the licensing process as soon as possible; and i have been looking into different schools that offer the quickest way and sound serious about their education.
I would like to know if anyone can give me their experience studying in the Finger Lakes School of Massage, in either of their schools; or at the Onondaga schools.
(Im not really considering NYC because all their schools have a very lengthy program).
and since i will be so close to CT do i also need to get my CT license? can i be licensed i several states at once? Is having the National Certification and a 1000hrs of training enough to work anywhere? Since going back to school (to study massage) is not what i was expecting after so long i would like to make the best decision for the future.
Im 33, feel young and very excited about the changes coming up, and I don't even know where i will end up living in the long run. I wouldn't like to have to worry about this every time i change states... does that make sense?
I appreciate your input and whatever you think might help me in my moving process :)
Alejandra :smt006

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pueppi
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Re: Foreign MT moving into the states

Post by pueppi » Tue Oct 07, 2014 8:21 am

Hi Ali,

Welcome to the boards and to the states in the near future.

I don't know the answers to very many of your questions, but I do believe you can hold a license in more than one state. You just have to go through that states requirements to do so (at least that is my understanding).

We have a few special sections for questions similar to yours, and if you haven't found them yet, it may help you to go through them while you are waiting for other people to respond here. Maybe you will find at least a few more answers to your questions in those, or a post will lead you to another place to find the answer/s. :)

- County, State & Country Requirements, Legislation and Politics
- National Certification
- School & Curriculum Discussion
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, leading to the most amazing view. May your rivers flow without end, meandering through valleys tinkling with bells...
Houston Massage Therapy - Advanced Massage Therapy - Lucas & Lucas, LLC

Ali
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Re: Foreign MT moving into the states

Post by Ali » Wed Oct 08, 2014 8:22 am

Good! I will read through those posts, i had looked through the forum but didnt see them before thank you!!!!
I will keep checking every once in a while in case there are any more responses.
Best regards, Ale

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pueppi
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Re: Foreign MT moving into the states

Post by pueppi » Mon Oct 13, 2014 4:59 pm

Ali wrote: As far as i know from talking to different schools and the board of education, they will not transfer any credits for my previous education, or experience, because here in Argentina massage therapy is not a certified profession, so even though the school where i studied was amazing, it doesn´t have the government´s backup. I am certified in Esalen Massage, and have studied neuromuscular therapy and Zero Balancing in the States, but i know those credits are also non-transferrable.
Hi Ali,

I have been thinking about your situation. From what I can tell, you're going to need to get 1000 hours for New York (according to the FingerLakes site), and they will only accept 250 as transfer hours. From your description in the original post, they won't give you credit for anything because in Argentina it is not a certified profession.
As of January 2002, NYS allows registered programs to accept no more than 250 clock hours completed in other approved schools or programs in the following courses:
  • Anatomy & Physiology
  • Kinesiology
  • Shiatsu
  • Student Massage Clinic hours
To apply for transfer credit, simply submit your completed FLSM Application, and all relevant transcripts and detailed course descriptions. We will review your records and inform you of any credits you may be eligible to transfer into our program, and will at that time arrange for you to take any applicable challenge exam to evaluate your knowledge of transferred material. Tuition will be discounted in a pro-rated manner, reflecting hours transferred to the program.

If you already have 1000 hours of coursework, we suggest you contact New York State directly regarding licensure application.
A few thoughts/questions regarding all of this:

1. I'm just wondering if they will give you any (maybe even a little) credit for your Esalen certification, or the other classes you took in the States.

2. Is there is a way to get at least 250 of your hours transferred to a country that acknowledges massage as a certified profession (get that licensure), and then use that to transfer up to New York. If you could do that, maybe that would save you 250 hours. I haven't looked into it in detail regarding your situation, but perhaps there is a country in South America that isn't hard to get a country certification in. Or, is there a way to get the school you studied at to transfer your hours to a country that has government back-up and then from there have it transferred into the States?

Or, if you have access to a country that utilizes the ITEC system, maybe you could somehow be allowed to take the international certification and use that as your transfer. If either of these were the case, maybe you could even locate a school in NewYork that would take more than 250 hours credit and you could take even less coursework in the state to complete the coursework for the exam.

Not that it is useful, but I do think Costa Rica has a 500 hour school.

This thread may have something in it that would be useful regarding ITEC (even though it isn't in Argentina):
pueppi wrote:From 2013 (I did a lot of research on ITEC for this thread, and I figure there will be something that could be helpful as ITEC covers both Massage & Reflexology work):
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, leading to the most amazing view. May your rivers flow without end, meandering through valleys tinkling with bells...
Houston Massage Therapy - Advanced Massage Therapy - Lucas & Lucas, LLC

Ali
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Re: Foreign MT moving into the states

Post by Ali » Thu Oct 16, 2014 7:21 pm

Hello, I wasn't aware that there was an international certification, i will read into it... I have pretty much made up my mind to do the 1000 hrs required in NY at the Finger Lakes school, because its only seven months and then i will be done. (I hope)
A friend of mine who works as a therapist in Phoenix recommended that i study somewhere where i could get an associate´s as well as the certification. So if i ever decide to study anything afterwards i will have that done... Every school i found that would do that seems to do it in two years, so i think thats not a choice right now... The more i research the more complex it seems to get, (associates, changing states and different license regulations, etc). :smt012
The people i talked with at Finger Lakes told me they have a therapist form Esalen studying with them, and she also needs to do the whole program. So nope... those credits are not transferrable. I guess i will just have to go the long way. Its ok because i will probably learn a lot of new things.
thanks again I appreciate your input so much!! :smt006

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squash_blsm
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Re: Foreign MT moving into the states

Post by squash_blsm » Sat Oct 18, 2014 7:30 am

There is no need to get an Associates Degree, it's the HOURS from an accredited school that any state licensing board will look at.
A lot of the degree programs were put together solely as a vehicle for the academy or college to make extra money utilizing US federal loan programs and putting the student into unnecessary debt. The programs and instructors are usually not as good as the established Massage Therapy schools.
CT requirements are 500hrs rather than NY 1000hrs...this might be the way to go initially.
I am disappointed that the state and school are unwilling to transfer any of your credits and even consider your experience.
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Ali
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Re: Foreign MT moving into the states

Post by Ali » Fri Oct 24, 2014 11:31 am

Thank you !!!!! I will post more questions as they arise... Im so happy to have found this forum!
XOXO
Ali

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pueppi
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Re: Foreign MT moving into the states

Post by pueppi » Wed Dec 23, 2015 3:49 am

I know at this point, none of the transfer school information useful. But, I wanted to follow up with links, just in case someone comes across this thread and needs them for something in the future.
pueppi wrote:Not that it is useful, but I do think Costa Rica has a 500 hour school.
Link to the Costa Rica School of Massage Therapy --- https://crsmt.com/

And, while I am at it... since you are from Argentina, I will assume you speak spanish. So I am adding a school from Puerto Rico for future reference too: Puerto Rico Massage & Bodywork Institute: http://puertoricomassage.com/?page_id=16


BTW, how are things going and where are you at now? Update, please! :)
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, leading to the most amazing view. May your rivers flow without end, meandering through valleys tinkling with bells...
Houston Massage Therapy - Advanced Massage Therapy - Lucas & Lucas, LLC

aloha_student
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Re: Foreign MT moving into the states

Post by aloha_student » Mon Jan 25, 2016 5:57 pm

Hello! I know this is a fairly old post, but I'm also working on moving back to New York and transferring my license so I will let you know what I know so far, in hopes you still check in to this thread sometimes.

There is a school in upstate NY that takes anything transferrable and charges you for exactly (no more, no less) the number of hours you are short for the NYS license (currently, $18/hr). You can actually pay for a portion of a course to get only the hours you need. Here is the website, in case you have any credits from anywhere that they'd consider:
http://www.cnwsmt.com/transfer-students/

Yes, you can work in CT with a CT license, while and after getting a NYS license. This is actually exactly the plan I had, so I double-checked. The CT license requires the MBLEX, and although technically you don't submit transcripts for the MBLEX, someone more knowledgable than me can comment on the ethics of taking the test without US-based coursework. More to the point, CT requires that you submit transcripts from a US-based, 500-hr program in order to be licensed, in addition to the test.

Regarding your comment about NYC schools requiring too many hours - they all require the 1000 hours you need for the license, which is a long program. Some schools deliver those hours in the context of a degree, which is longer, but I have talked to every school in NYC and all of them work with students who are filling the deficiency hours for NYS.

The NYS massage license office has been helpful in answering all of my questions, so I suggest you just call them (if you haven't already). They'll tell you exactly what they will and won't take, and they sent me a very thorough and lengthy email detailing the whole process, all forms, etc. There is licensure by endorsement, and it's worth mentioning that the website doesn't specifically state that educational requirements are US-based; in fact, it specifically mentions that it's not required. Here is the number: 518-474-3817 ext. 150

Finally, it's worth mentioning, as a NY'er who loves NY (and because there have been one or two somewhat cynical comments about NY and its licensing from a BWOL member in other posts) that New York state is and always has been very particular about providing professional licenses and certifications in any field. For example, I was formerly in nursing and NY remains one of the only states that doesn't participate in the national nursing license. The state is highly regulated in many ways, which I believe contributes to it's being at the forefront of many professional fields. Just my opinion, but for me working there is worth the licensing battle. Good luck and keep in touch!!

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