Since our inception, Rockwell was the first school to use the terminology of  ‘traditional’ naturopathic doctor (TND) as a replacement for naturopathic doctor (ND) to avoid confusion or liability in states that license naturopathic physicians a.k.a. NDs. 

Other educational providers, like Trinity School of Natural Health soon followed suit, disbanding their old ND program completely in lieu of concerns about legal issues since licensing naturopaths has become a thing in some states. Update: Trinity has no reinstated their naturopath program as ‘traditional’, like we did years ago. 

We can only speculate that this was a legal issue for Trinity, because their traditional naturopath grads were using ‘ND’, a few which have infamously made the news on more than one occasion resulting in the school being heavily criticized for allowing their students to use ‘ND’ as a professional designation, even though it had been taken over by licensed naturopathy for over a decade. For awhile, they pulled their whole naturopathy program, but later revived it adding traditional in the front.

Rockwell SOHM led the charge with use of TND as a professional designation back in 2015 after which all other holistic health educators, such as Trinity, followed suit. 

Therefore, in states where licensed or traditional naturopathy is restricted, it is common for our graduates to use CHHP, which stands for a “Certified Holistic Health Practitioner”.

We have a lot of resources on our TND and RTD FAQ pages that can help you learn more about your rights and regulations, as well as the laws in your state. You can also read more about state rights for naturopaths here

We encourage and allow students to adopt this title at their discretion and/or if they reside in any one of the few states where the practice of naturopathy is limited and/or restricted.

However, keep in mind, use of the professional title Traditional Naturopathic Doctor is perfectly legitimate in most states across the country (USA).

With that being said, and in the case of Rockwell, our use of the term “certified” means we certify that the graduate has completed our educational requirements, which are numerous indeed.

The public may at anytime call and verify a graduate who gets their own unique graduate ID #. 

Please visit this page to learn more about certification as it relates to alternative medicine.

Naturopathy Abroad

These same restrictions concerning naturopathic licensing do not usually apply to our international students abroad where licensing is not offered to naturopathic physicians.

Most people all over the world are free to practice naturopathy without restriction assuming responsible practice (see Benchmarks in Training for Traditional Naturopathy by the World Health Organization here).

The bottom line with all of this is that when it comes to holistic medicine education or alternative career paths, there is no governing body of any kind. Therefore there is no true certification. Which also means, no educational oversight, so students should choose the school that resonates best with them and their ideas of what a holistic medicine school should be.