Is it January yet??

I can’t tell you how ready the Elon PA program faculty and staff are to have the first class enroll! Every time I go by the Francis Center (which is almost daily), at least one faculty or staff member says how quiet it is up on the second floor and how they look forward to the hustle and bustle (and excitement!) students will bring. For them, January is a long way away.

However, over the next couple of months, there will be some new faces around Elon’s School of Health Sciences. The PA program will welcome 2 new staff members and 4 additional full-time faculty members to round out the full program staff. One staff member will serve as the Program Assistant, providing support to the clinical aspect of the program. The other new staff member will serve as the Client and Simulated Patient Coordinator, splitting her time between the PA and DPT programs. Keep an eye on the faculty & staff page – we will add their pictures & information when they start!

For now, it looks like we will have to make do with quiet hallways!

GRE Score Select Option

Beginning July 2, 2012, GRE test-takers will be able to choose which GRE scores to send to institutions. (Read more about this new ScoreSelect option on the GRE website.) What does this mean for you? If you take the exam and feel that the results don’t represent your best abilities, you don’t have to report those scores.

Additionally beginning July 2, test-takers will no longer be required to wait 60 days before taking the test again. Candidates can take the test again after only a 30 day period, but no more than 5 times within any continuous 12-month period.

Finally, keep an eye on the GRE website next month for new study materials to prepare for the revised GRE. Best of luck to those of you preparing for the GRE!

Accreditation Update

Earlier this month, the Elon PA program hosted the ARC-PA (Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant, Inc.) site visit team for our initial provisional accreditation visit. Per the ARC-PA website, Provisional Accreditation is an accreditation status granted by the ARC-PA for a limited, defined period of time (3 years) to a new PA program that has demonstrated its preparedness to initiate a program in accordance with the Accreditation Standards for Physician Assistant Education. The goals of the site visit are:

  • to study the PA program in relation to its compliance with the Standards.
  • to make on-site observations and verify, validate, and clarify the information and data provided by the program to the ARC-PA.
  • to incorporate the team’s findings and conclusions into a written report and to transmit the report to the ARC-PA. The report of the site visit team is compiled on the basis of its observations of the program, interviews with those involved in the site visit, information supplied to the site visit team by the program director and other officials, and information supplied by the ARC-PA.

The team spent 2 days at Elon meeting with various stakeholders for the program- the program director, PA faculty and staff, members of the feasibility study committee, admissions office, and senior administrative staff for the university. The team reviewed all aspects of the program, including the feasibility study, program objectives, curriculum, clinical rotations, and more.

In true Elon fashion, we were well-prepared for the site visit. As I mentioned in an earlier post, the Elon PA accreditation application was submitted early and we hosted a mock site visitor in March for additional preparation.

So what happens now? The PA program will receive a follow up report from ARC-PA with a summary of the findings, and will then have the opportunity to clarify any of the findings if necessary. ARC-PA will vote on Elon’s provisional accreditation status at their upcoming meeting in September 2012.

Until then, the program continues laying the foundation for our incoming class, and the new admissions cycle has opened. There’s never a dull moment at Elon!

 

**Elon University is developing its physician assistant studies curriculum and scheduled for review for provisional accreditation by the ARC-PA during their September 2012 meeting. Students will not be enrolled until ARC-PA provisional accreditation is secured.**

March Madness… Elon Style

Wow! It’s hard to believe the month of March is almost over. The past few weeks have felt like a whirlwind for our PA program – I’ll take a moment to catch you up on accreditation, interviews, and admissions events this month.

Our accreditation application was received by ARC-PA on March 1. The program was pleased to get the call confirming that all of the materials arrived safely and on time. What’s more is that, in true Elon fashion, ours was one of the most well-organized and nicest looking applications that ARC-PA has seen in a long time. Although Elon’s site visit isn’t until early May, the work is far from over. Today and tomorrow the PA program is hosting a consultant for a mock accreditation site visit which will further prepare us for the real deal in a couple of short months.

On the admissions front, we hosted what will likely be our final 2 interview days for this admissions cycle on March 12 and 16. Although we had tentatively set aside some May interview dates, it turns out that candidates are accepting our admissions offers at a higher rate than we originally planned for. As a result, our charter class for January 2013 is nearing capacity and we probably won’t open up the May interviews. The charter class profile is very strong- our candidates have a solid grounding in science and academic preparation as well as significant health care experience. Once the class is filled, we will compile the official class profile.

Over the weekend, we welcomed 80 guests to the Francis Center for our first PA program Open House. The event included a program overview, facility tour, admissions & financial planning session, and lots of time for Q&A. Our next Open House event will be this fall. Additionally, Elon’s PA program will be represented at the upcoming Health Careers Expo at universities across the state, including: NC State (3/26), UNC-Chapel Hill (3/27), Wake Forest University (3/28), and UNC-Charlotte/Davidson (3/29). Hope to see you there!

Finally, we are looking ahead to the next admissions cycle. Please keep an eye on our website (www.elon.edu/pa) over the coming months for additional information about interviews, deadlines, etc.

NC Residents: Check out the Forgivable Educational Loans for Service

Created by the 2011 NC General Assembly, this program is a forgivable loan providing funding for to students pursing degrees in certain critical fields. Students must be NC residents. Students in the physician assistant program may be eligible for up to $10,000 annually with a maximum aggregate limit of $20,000. Recipients must sign a promissory note agreeing to repay the loan by working in North Carolina in their approved field of study.  Applications and all additional information are available on-line at www.CFNC.org/FELS with a closing date of April 1, 2012.

What are you waiting for? Go start the application now!!

Is there still time to apply??

So you may be thinking of applying to Elon’s new PA program, wondering what the best timing would be. Since the program doesn’t enroll until January 2013, that may seem like a far off goal… And, as you know, we are accepting applications on a rolling basis, therefore we don’t have any deadlines…. But, let me offer some context as to where we are in the admissions process.

At this time, we have extended the first round of admissions offers from the January interview days. The next interviews are scheduled for March 12 and 16. Beyond that, we have tentatively blocked off some time in May for interviews, but we will only open that up if we need to. (Read: we will host May interviews if the class isn’t full yet).

If you would like for the admissions committee to review your file in consideration for the upcoming interviews, held March 12 and 16, we strongly encourage you to submit your application and all supplemental materials no later than March 1.  That will give our office time to receive and process your materials and present them to the committee for consideration.

As you remember, a complete file includes: the application itself, 3 letters of recommendation, official GRE scores, and transcripts from every institution you have attended. (See our program requirements for more information).

If you have any questions regarding the admissions process or your application status, please email our office at gradadm@elon.edu. We look forward to working with you!

On the Road Again

We have lined up some travel for February and March. We love to meet all of the wonderful candidates that are applying to the program, and we’d love to meet those of you who are interested but may not have started the application process yet.  If we’ll be in your neck of the woods we hope you’ll take a minute to visit our table and say hello! Our travels will take us to Atlanta, GA, and the following NC cities: Greensboro, Greenville, Raleigh, Chapel Hill, Winston-Salem, and Charlotte.

UNCG Career Expo, Wednesday 2/8 from 12:30pm-4pm (Cone Ballroom)
Health Careers Program Recruitment Fair, Wednesday 2/15 frpm 10am-1:30pm (Manley Student Center Upper Concourse, Spelman College – Atlanta, GA)
ECU Health Career Expo, Thursday 3/22 from 12pm-4pm (ECU’s campus, location TBD)
NC State Health Professions Expo, Monday 3/26 from 12pm-4pm (Talley Student Center)
UNC-Chapel Hill Health Professons Expo, Tuesday 3/27 from 10am-3pm
Wake Forest Health Professions Expo, Wednesday 3/28 from 12pm-4pm
UNC-Charlotte/Davidson Health Professions Meet n Greet,Thursday 3/29 from 1pm-2:30pm

Of course if you’re not too far from Elon we’d love to see you at our PA program Open House, on Saturday March 24.