MS in Physician Assistant Studies | Veronica Pham | 2021 Graduate
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Veronica Pham, MS/PA Studies '21 
MS in Physician Assistant Studies

July 29, 2021
PCOM physician assistant studies graduate Veronica Pham, MS/PA StudiesWhat inspired you to pursue a career as a physician assistant?

I am the child of Vietnamese immigrants who grew up seeing family members struggle to receive the healthcare they needed because of the language barrier between themselves and their clinicians. I always knew that I wanted to help resolve this issue in any way I could. I was a junior in high school when I learned about the physician assistant (PA) field and it has been my goal to pursue this career ever since.

Over the years, I translated a lot of medical information for family members which only reinforced my desire to become a PA. My ultimate goal is to work in my hometown, Broomall, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Philadelphia, and give back to the community that raised me. I hope to help bridge the gap between immigrants, especially Vietnamese-Americans, and their healthcare providers.

Why did you choose PCOM for your graduate education?

I chose Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine because of its close proximity to home which allowed me to receive an excellent medical education and be close to my family.

Were there any faculty or staff members that were influential during your time at PCOM? 

My advisor Jill Cunningham, MHS, PA-C, director of didactic studies and associate professor, PA studies, as well as Sean Guinane, DHSC, PA-C, assistant program director, and Philadelphia campus site director, were both influential faculty members who helped guide me through the last two years.

What accomplishment are you most proud of during your life or your time at PCOM?

I am most proud of completing PA School and being one of the first people in my family to pursue an education in medicine. I am also proud of soon becoming part of the 9% of certified Asian-American Physician Assistants in the United States.

What impact do you hope to have after graduation?

I hope to establish a career in primary care after graduation. Also, I hope to inspire other young girls to pursue a career in medicine. Ultimately, I hope to become a provider that my patients can trust to give them the best care.

What advice would you give to a graduate student that is starting their journey?

My advice to a new student is to believe in yourself! It is very easy to become discouraged because studying medicine is hard, but remember that your family and friends believe in you, and so do the faculty. Take it one step at a time, one day at a time, and enjoy the journey!