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The Mission of the PCOM Physician Assistant Program is to educate highly qualified physician assistants, focusing on preparing them to become competent, compassionate, and comprehensive health care providers for clinical practice in the broad range of practice settings in both primary and specialty care fields that reflect the changing health care environment.

Educational Philosophy

The educational philosophy of the PCOM Physician Assistant Program is that our graduates will be leaders in the health care community, striving for excellence in all academic and professional endeavors while helping to provide health care for those in need.

Program Goals

1. To identify for admission those individuals with the pre-requisite academic background, a strong interest in the PA career, excellent interpersonal skills, and the maturity necessary for Physician Assistant education.

  • The PCOM PA program receives over 2,000 applications per year for a class of approximately 55 students. In 2013 – 2014, we had 43 applicants competing for every one seat in the class. We feel extremely fortunate to be able to select the strongest candidates from this applicant pool.

2. To provide a coordinated, comprehensive, didactic, and clinical curriculum that will enable the graduate to deliver the highest quality of health care services with physician supervision.

  • The PA program has over 698 graduates. With national certifying board exam scores consistently above the national average, we are proud of the rigorous curriculum that enables our graduates to succeed.

3. To promote a clinical and didactic environment that embraces the concept of a health care team that provides communication, cooperation, and compassion.

  • The program believes strongly in its core values because they are the foundation of teamwork and cooperation. The faculty measures students' success in reflecting these values during frequent advisor meetings, and preceptors are asked to evaluate these standards in our students during rotations.

4. To encourage and facilitate the utilization of Physician Assistants, especially our graduates, wherever needed.

  • PCOM PA graduates work in over 38 states and in 52 different specialties, ranging alphabetically from Allergy to Vascular Surgery. Our graduates provide care to patients at prestigious medical centers such as Yale University, University of Penn, Mayo Clinic, and the Fox Chase Cancer Center, as well as in small practices across the country. A number of our graduates have or are serving in the military.

5. To promote a comprehensive approach to health and disease by emphasizing primary care, health maintenance, and prevention of disease.

  • The Clinical Medicine courses prepare our graduates to work in primary care settings such as Emergency Medicine, Internal Medicine, Family Medicine, or Pediatrics, where they manage acute and chronic conditions while promoting wellness.

6. To promote in our graduates the importance of life-long learning and ongoing self-evaluation.

  • Our Research Methods course teaches students to utilize and assess the quality of medical literature for use in daily clinical practice. The program embraces technology that arms students with a means for staying up-to-date of the changes in medicine.

7. To promote an understanding of information literacy by designing, conducting, presenting or interpreting research.

  • The Evidence-Based Medicine and Research Practicum courses prepare students to produce papers eligible for submission to peer-reviewed journals. All finals papers are published in PCOM's Digital Commons. Additionally, PCOM students and graduates have presented at the AAPA national conference.

8. To provide our students with the medical knowledge, skills and attitudes to engage in clinical practice as a Physician Assistant.

  • The program's five year first-time taker average pass rate is 97%, compared to the national average of 93%. Overall, since 2004, 100% of PCOM PA graduates have ultimately passed the boards and earned the PA-C credential.
Last Updated: 2/23/15