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Lurana Bain, Director of Massage Therapy

Ask Lurana Bain why she wanted to become a licensed massage therapist and the answer is simple: To make a difference in the lives of others while impacting their well-being.

Lurana, Director of the Elgin Community College (ECC) Massage Therapy Program, shared insights about the massage therapy industry as a participant at EXPLORE 2017: A-U46 Community, Curriculum, and Career Expo. Bain had a clear goal in mind during the Expo: “I want to introduce the profession of massage therapy, the educational path and the opportunities for employment,” she said. “I hope to educate attendees so they include massage therapy in their options when choosing a profession that is right for them.”

And now is a good time to get into the profession. The local job market is expected to grow 24 percent over the next few years, Bain said. While job demand is high, ECC is working to meet that need with flexibility for students to attend day or evening classes.

Bain, who is nationally board-certified in therapeutic massage and bodywork, holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology, and a certificate in massage therapy from ECC.

A truly unique aspect of the industry, Bain said, is that with one year of education, students can earn a certificate then begin work immediately as a massage therapist after passing a licensing exam and receiving a state license. She said it is a profession that can be very fulfilling.

“Massage therapists literally work hands-on to assist people with pain management, recovery from injury, stress reduction, during cancer treatment and many other conditions. It’s a rewarding career.”