• Cait Donovan

#straightfromcait: Higher Education, Again, as an Adult. Learning About Burnout Science


Did you know that although I received my Masters Degree in Acupuncture and East Asian Medicine back in 2007, I never received a Bachelor’s Degree? This academic path is actually quite common around the world, but definitely less so here in the states. And, of course, I happened to settle down in New Jersey, the one state in the entire country that doesn’t allow you to become licensed in or practice acupuncture without a Bachelor’s degree in addition to a Masters.

Fast forward to this summer: I am now going backwards at age 39 to receive a Bachelor’s Degree in Biobehavioral Health at Penn State’s World Campus. I am loving the opportunity to throw myself back into academics and to establish connections between my background in Eastern Medicine and the concepts we’ve explored so far in my new courses.

Tune into this week’s #straightfromcait episode to learn more about my journey back into higher education as an adult. Learn about the overlaps between Biobehavioral Health and Eastern medicine, why science always has its shortcomings, and why it’s never too late to dive back into the world of academia.

If you have any questions you want answered about burnout and the science behind it, feel free to share your thoughts in our FRIED. Facebook Group. In the coming weeks, I’ll be sharing research articles and other relevant sources on my #straightfromcait episodes, plus I’m always on the lookout for a good research paper topic!


  • “So, I decided at the age of 39 that I’m going to go backwards and get a degree that is lesser than the one I have to be able to practice a medicine that I’ve been at for a decade and a half. I told you, it’s a little convoluted, but here we are.” (3:00-3:20)

  • “Biobehavioral health is like the Western version of Eastern medicine. It’s the Western medicine’s ideal of creating a more holistic system.” (4:16-4:26)

  • I both love science and remain a science skeptic….Science is incomplete and will always be – that’s part of its definition. It’s a beautiful, powerful thing that we have to remember is here to help us explore and to learn and then to continue exploring and learning. Everything we learn is simply another step to getting another step to getting another step to allow us to go deeper or broader or connect things that weren’t connected before.” (5:40-6:11)

  • “I didn’t add a full-time degree to my life and not eliminate anything else. I had to eliminate something in order to maintain my sanity and be sure that I’m not burning out while I’m researching burnout and talking to you about burnout.” (8:08-8:22)


Penn State Biobehavioral Health Bachelor’s Degree: https://www.worldcampus.psu.edu/degrees-and-certificates/penn-state-online-biobehavioral-health-bachelors-degree/

FRIED. The Burnout Podcast Facebook Group: https://facebook.com/groups/friedtheburnoutpodcast



If you know that it’s time to actually DO something about the burnout cycle you’ve been in for too long - book your free consult today: bit.ly/callcait

Podcast production and show notes provided by FIRESIDE Marketing

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