Greetings loyal fans of Hands On Health! My name is Makarita Waiari and I am 19 years old currently enrolled in a Bachelor’s of Science degree majoring in neuromuscular and massage therapy at the New Zealand College of Massage.  It is now my second year of study; I have already achieved a certificate in relaxation massage and I am about to begin the second semester of my therapeutic diploma. Last year I approached our American guest instructor Laura and asked her if I could intern at Hands On Health during my semester break. She was over-the-top excited and all my nervousness about asking her melted away! I arrived in early December and will be returning to NZ in March and I can already tell my experience will be invaluable to my future career. Do I want to practice as a sole practitioner? – work for a company? how much should I expect to earn? What skills really help people? Do I want to own a spa or a medically focused practice? Can I do both? What about taxes, expenses, negotiating, delegating? My eyes and ears are wide open and I’m absorbing EVERYTHING!

NZCM intern Makarita Waiari from Auckland NZ to NC in the USAI am grateful that Laura and Tammy gave me a lifetime opportunity and experience that not many New Zealanders get to have and I thank them for it. My short term goal is to open a small independent business during the same time I am studying, save and grow my business and travel the world. My long term goal is a bit mumbo jumbo at the moment; one of my ideas is to open a resort in the islands but I am still opening my eyes to possibilities and the ideas are flooding in!

Who would come to America and not take advantage of travel! Laura and Tammy treated me to a trip to Washington, DC and NYC and we’re about to embark on a visit to the sunnier side of winter, a trip to Naples, Fla! My photo book will be filled with pictures of the White House, WWII memorial, Lincoln Memorial, Times Square, Empire State Building, and heaps more. It was great fun and beautiful at night time, with all the Holiday lights ablaze.

I look forward to meeting you when you arrive for your appointments at Hands On Health. You might even be one of the “lucky ones” who earns the opportunity for me to give you a student massage or one of the people who receive duo massage where I work in the room alongside your therapist. Wait to you experience that awesomeness! I hope to see you soon! (And if you know any 20 something’s who would like to make a new friend, please introduce them! I like these ladies and all, but a few friends my own age is certainly a welcome treat!)