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KThames

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About KThames

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    Physician Assistant Student

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  1. Hey guys, sorry I haven't been around much to answer questions; school has kept me busy! As of right now, the Facebook group for the next cohort seems to have about 29 people accepted, which potentially leaves 3 spots left open, but that's not to say there aren't people who haven't joined the group yet even though they've been accepted. Many of us were pulled off the waitlist in December and November, so if you're waitlisted, don't give up hope! It's just a matter of other schools sending out invites later in the cycle and people giving up their seats. Keeping my fingers crossed for all of you!
  2. Just so you guys know, the students on the panel do NOT speak with the faculty afterwards regarding the students who interviewed. Everything you say or ask is between just us! It's your time to ask questions and get to know what it's like to be a student at CSU and we are definitely not "judging" you guys
  3. So without taking COVID into play, back in January we got to vote and decide what type of community service project we wanted to do during didactic year. My class voted to help a local charity that works with children who have cancer, but unfortunately we haven’t been able to carry that out due to the pandemic. It’s a little bit on the back burner right now, but I think we’re trying to find another way to serve that might be safer. There is also the opportunity for a mission trip during the clinical year, which I think is usually in August and goes to South America. I’m not sure that the clinical year students will get to go this year or not, unfortunately. As far as clinical rotations abroad, there are none offered by the school. We have the option to pick up to 2 new clinical sites, which allows many students to go back home for a rotation or two, but you have to already have a connection to the site and are not allowed to cold call places to try to get in somewhere. As far as setting one up abroad if you have a connection, I honestly do not know if they would allow it or not. That would be a great question to ask the faculty during your interview though! Hope that helps!
  4. Sure! The Path to Becoming a PA course covers a lot of the "soft" topics, like leadership skills, how to have difficult conversations with patients, HIPAA, coding & billing, cultural awareness, how to reduce medical errors, and tons more. It's kind of a catch-all class that we use to round out the non-medical side of our education. We occasionally have guest lecturers from the community who come and speak to us as well. It's a nice end to our weeks!
  5. Hi there! I'll do my best to answer your questions A typical week consists of classes M-F. Most days we start at 8am and finish between 3pm-3:30pm, except Fridays, when we finish around 12:30. Rarely, we are asked to stay late on Fridays for a special event or lecture, but this has only happened once so far, and we knew well in advance. We have a professional tutor come in on Tuesday afternoons, every week during the initial 5 week intense Anatomy Cadaver course, then once per body system, except Cardio where we saw her twice because the unit is so big. These tutoring sessions are usually optional, but they run from around 3:45-6pm. Our classes are back to back, with a 10 minute break between them, and about 1-2 hours for lunch, depending on the day. MW we have a long break because we only have 3 classes (Basic Science, Clin Med, and Patient Assessment & Diagnostic Methods, aka PADM), and T/Th we have a shorter 1hr break because we have 4 classes (Basic Science, Clin Med, Pharm, and Problem-Based Learning, aka PBL). Friday we start at 9am and only have Clin Med and Path to Becoming a PA. Classes are anywhere from 1hr-2hrs long. Right now, since we are still online for most classes, we are live-streaming lectures at the same time as we would normally be on campus, so it's nice to be keeping the same schedule, and I really appreciate live-stream vs pre-recorded. We're slowly starting to come back to campus for small-group skills workshops, and are hoping to phase back into on-campus lectures in August with responsible preventive measures in place such as mask-wearing and social distancing. Honestly, how much you study is going to vary between classmates, as well as units. Since we are body system based, all of the Derm techs in my class likely had to study less than everyone else for the Derm unit, but it will vary wildly. No one but you can determine how much you need to study. I will say that most of us still find time to enjoy hobbies, but this is PA school, and you need to study as much as you have to in order to understand the material. No one in my class has dropped/failed out so far, so I think that speaks a lot to our class and the quality of our instruction. Many of us use SmartyPANCE, Picmonic, and Osmosis with great success, and the program purchased Rosh subscriptions for all of us for the duration of the didactic year. I'm not sure if they will keep doing this, but they didn't start it until quarantine started and we went online, so they may or may not keep up with it next year if we're fully back on campus. I don't think we can audit classes outside of the PA program, but feel free to look into it. You likely won't really have time for this though because you'll be studying the PA material anyway and that has to come first. As far as additional electives, no, you cannot request more than that because it would delay your graduation. You can, however, request rotation sites outside of our area, and even back near where you live, you'll just need to work with the Clinical Site coordinator in order to set them up in advance! I thought that was really great! I think I've already answered the religion question earlier in the thread, but if you have additional questions, feel free to message me The fried chicken is pretty darn good, but i would expect nothing less from the South I hope that all helps! It is a great program that is growing and evolving each year. We are the third class, so we've heard a lot about what has changed since the first cohort, and they take our opinions and ideas to heart when working to improve the program as a whole. As far as accreditation, the most recent review came back with absolutely NOTHING that had to be changed or improved in order to keep moving forward, which is insane (it apparently almost never happens). Everything going well, the program should easily get full accreditation when the final review comes around. The faculty is very invested in us, and while a lot of us are frustrated with the online aspect, they are working so hard to do their best to help us be successful despite this difficulty. If you have any other questions, feel free to ask or message me! Best of luck to you! I'll be on the student panel at one of the interviews, so I might see you there!
  6. Our admissions coordinator just emailed all of the current students today to see who is interested in being on the student panels for interview days coming up, so it sounds like interview invites should be going out soon! I only had about 2 weeks notice for my interview, and they usually do dates at the end of the month, so hopefully you'll hear in the next week or so! Hang in there guys! I volunteered, so hopefully I will see many of you on Zoom very soon!
  7. Sorry for the delay in responding, last week was Cardio midterms so I was a little crazy with studying Unfortunately, I can't really speak too much about clinical rotations since I'm still in my didactic year. What I do know is that they try to get you rotations near where you live, but I think the typical max radius is about 45-60 miles. If you're moving in from out of town, they are happy to try to work with you on getting rotations outside of SC, with enough advance notice, if you want to do rotations back home. My class hasn't started really talking about clinicals yet, since we don't start until January, but that's the extent of what we've been told so far. Hope that helps a little!
  8. This is a really great question! I will say that it primarily depends on the instructor, as some don't at all, or very rarely, but others incorporate it much more. Most of the time it involves them discussing that "God has put you in this classroom for a reason" or that they are praying for us during exams, but some instructors discuss how the body is "by God's design," etc. Some faculty members include a slide or two in their PowerPoint lectures that has a Bible verse that they take a minute to reflect on, but mostly during the actual lecture, you wouldn't even know you were at a religious school. During special events, Director Poole will usually lead the class in a prayer as well but I never feel pressured to pray. The biggest related curriculum adjustment comes from the Path to Becoming a PA class where we are asked to incorporate our "Biblical world view" into our papers or discussions. Many students in my class chose the school based on its religious affiliation specifically and I think they are very satisfied with the level of religious emphasis and enjoy incorporating it into their research papers and discussions, but I just really loved the program, and actually chose it over another non-religious program and have no regrets. If religion is important to you, I think you will be very happy at CSU, but even if it's not, I think you would still enjoy the program and not feel overwhelmed by religious oversight; I certainly don't. Hope that helps!
  9. Just a heads up regarding interviews. Things might be a little different this year due to COVID-19. Our faculty has been very busy trying to adjust our learning curriculum accordingly, as well as manage the clinical year students getting back into rotations. I definitely understand it's a tough time playing the waiting game (I did it for 2 years, so I know what you're going through!), but please just try to be patient as they navigate this new territory. I'm honestly not sure what the timeline will look like (they haven't mentioned anything to us about it), but I imagine it will be slightly modified from previous years. In the meantime, if you have any general questions about the program, feel free to ask; I'm happy to answer what I can! Best of luck to all of you!
  10. I had a few Cs on my transcript as well as a couple of Bs, mostly in chemistry classes, and still got in. I would say go for it! Best of luck to you!
  11. My class has 32 students and I believe that is the max they are going to accept. Can't say 100%, but I'm fairly certain that is the number of seats available for all classes going forward. they originally started with 25, then increased to 30 (I think), then 32 with my class.
  12. Hi there! I was offered a seat at one other program and ended up choosing CSU for several reasons. The first, and most important reason was that it “felt right.” You’ll probably hear a lot of people say this, but when you go to interviews you will likely get a feel for whether or not you want to be there. For me, CSU felt like the right place from the minute I walked into my interview. The faculty was so welcoming and friendly, they genuinely seemed invested in us as candidates. I felt very at ease, like I already belonged. The other most important reason was location. I had the choice between Connecticut and South Carolina. I have family in both regions so I had a choice on who I wanted to be close to, and what type of lifestyle I wanted while in school. For me, I would be closer to my parents in SC, as well as a nice lifestyle near the beach while in school, vs dealing with a more expensive cost of living and harsh New England winters. This was an easy choice for me as well. The other big reason was start date. The school in CT didn’t start until August, whereas CSU started in January and was a 3 month shorter program, so I would be graduating an entire year early. This was a HUGE factor for me as well, and ultimately one of the biggest deciding factors. Other things that initially made me consider CSU and am now grateful for are a full 5 week intensive anatomy cadaver lab, 2 elective rotations, and a systems-based curriculum. I could go on about all the reasons I love my program, but those were the biggest. Cost had no place in my decision whatsoever. I hope this helps! If you have other, more specific questions, please feel free to ask!
  13. Hi guys! I’m currently a PA-S1 at CSU and really loving it! I just wanted to wish everyone good luck this cycle, and you picked a great school to apply to! If you have any questions about the program, please feel free to ask and I’ll do my best to answer. Admissions stuff is a little different this year with the COVID pandemic, so I’ll defer most specific admissions questions to the admissions coordinator. Please don’t ask what kind of questions they ask during the interview, as they kindly ask us to not share in order to keep things fair for everyone. But if you have questions about what the program is like, I’m happy to share! Best of luck to all of you!
  14. I also just got pulled off the wait list yesterday! I'm putting down my deposit this weekend and can't wait to meet everyone! It's going to be a little hectic moving from Utah in 3 weeks but we'll make it work! I sent a request to join the FB group
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