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  1. I teach part-time as a clinical medical assistant instructor for a vocational program (approximately 25 students from a variety of age groups/ethnicities/educational backgrounds). Since it's not direct patient experience, I still feel it's important to list somewwhere on my application as I teach both didactic as well as clinical skills. Thoughts?
  2. I'm looking for shadowing opportunities in Sugar land area/Houston texas area this summer. I'm a responsible college student with experience volunteering and shadowing in hospitals who simply needs to strengthen my application with more experience. Thanks in advance, I would really appreciate any information!
  3. Hello everyone! I just got my first official job offer today (I'm a new grad) and wanted to get some opinions on the offer: Pros: -120 hrs/month at $65/hr (12 hr shifts) -shift is in the fast track with the option to move into the main ED as I gain experience -flexible scheduling (PAs make their own schedule and can work whenever as long as there is coverage) -malpractice with tail -relocation reimbursement up to 5k -2k for CME -disability and 401(k) -good feedback on the job from a PA working there Cons: -No PTO -No health insurance -No match on 401(k) Do the pros outweigh the cons? Should I hold out for a better offer? Thanks in advance! Emily
  4. This is just my second draft but I wanted to see what others think about my narrative and see if there were areas of improvement. Thank you. Growing up with a mother who is schizophrenic was the primary driving force that pushed me into studying medicine. The many times of confusion as to why my mother did not want to play with me. The nights where she would lie in her room and talk to herself for hours on end. As a young child, it was quite scary to see the one you love not able to fully express it. In order to survive and be given a normal childhood; I was placed in the custody of my grandmother, while my mother was forced to live in a group home. With my grandmother at my side, I was able to overcome my mother's disability and learn how to accept it. The long hours spent as a child researching the disease and understanding how it came to be. It was this diligent research that drove me to first pursue psychology. I fell in love with psychology in high school and by the time I became a senior, I was certain that it was going to be my career. Before moving on from SPC to USF I shadowed a psychologist to see what I would be getting myself into. From there, it was apparent that the field of psychology is something that would not fit me. To brave the elements and start over was very hard, but quickly, I rebounded. Going in the same area of psychology, I decided to become an MD in pursuit of Neurology. I have always been fascinated with the brain and how one thing affects another. Shriners Hospital for Children has also been a big part in my life. When I was in middle school I would fly up to see my aunt who worked as a lab manager for Shriners in Minneapolis, Minnesota. I would often shadow doctors, nurses, PAs and tech to see how things were for them and see how they all fit to the hospital as a whole. Witnessing these children with such disabilities did not discourage me from spending time with them. I enjoyed playing games and learning about each patients. Volunteering in the Emergency Department at Morton Plant Hospital Clearwater was one of the most joyful experiences. As a volunteer, I did regular patient comfort rounds. I would ask the patient and family how they were doing. If I could offer food, drink, or a warm blanket in hopes to make there stay more comfortable. In some cases, I even spent the time to talk to the patients. As I got to know them better, I felt this overwhelming connection. I could see that I was actually making a difference to the people I was helping. My first taste of bridging that gap to help patients. From here I took my newly sought out passion and focused my full effort at USF in Tampa. While there, I volunteered at the Shriner's Hospital that was established on campus. It was at this time where I realized that becoming an MD was not for me and that my life fit into the role of a PA better. While working as a medical scribe in the Emergency Department of Florida Hospital Waterman, I have been privileged to see many things over the years. Previously volunteering in the ED prepared me for how chaotic it can be, but nothing could prepare me for the actual interactions I'd be facing. This was a real test to actually see if becoming a PA is right for me. I have been working as a scribe well over a year and there is not a doubt in my mind that my passion to become a PA is as strong as ever. Being able to work side by side of doctors and PAs was a great learning experience, one that no other job could emulate. Everyday I worked, my knowledge of medicine grew and grew. Knowing my intent to enter the field, the providers I worked with challenged me mentally in regards to diagnoses, XR interpretation and overall anatomy. As I worked diligently, I quickly learned how to interpret laboratory values and what they actually meant. From listening to a patients histories, I began to develop the same mindset that the MD or PA thinks in terms of questioning and diagnoses. I want to be a PA because I feel the overall need to help people. While working in the ED, it instilled in me the reason why I want to be in the medical field. It also showed me that I believe I could do this as a career. Everyday at work is always filled with excitement. That drive that pushes me to better myself and seek out ways to help the foundation of why I want to becoma a PA. No matter what I do, I always accomplish every goal I set out to do.
  5. Why am I knocking on the doorway to the start of a PA career? Well, because I would love to come in, trade my jacket for a lab coat, and stay for around 40 years. To me, it's the best house on the healthcare block. And here's why. Learning from my own experiences in healthcare, community service, and college, I believe I've found a fast track to personal and professional fruition within the PA field. As a PA, I can concentrate on one-on-one patient relationships while working closely with other members of the healthcare team. I can continually improve my clinical skills and knowledge. I can be healing, constructive, scientific, inspirational, and impactful in the lives of others. The PA profession is the right fit for many reasons, but here are some of the main ones. First, PAs have an excellent tradition of forming effective relationships with patients. My personal experiences like serving on religious leadership teams, wheeling students with disabilities around Young Life outdoor camps, and investing time into mentoring high schoolers have taught me the worth of developing relationships that serve others. And professionally, working as a Therapy Aide in the acute inpatient setting, some of the moments I value most are when the PT and I are able to go beyond our job description and engage the patient as a whole person. What can we do to improve their situation right now? Sometimes it's communicating a need to the nursing staff, or allowing extra time for more in-depth patient education. Sometimes it's just delivering a cup of ice water. But when we're able to reach out and connect with a patient in this way, we become more than just hospital workers, we're allies, and we're both built up because of it. Every experience I've had with PAs reinforces that this profession is highly focused on person to person relationships. The connections PAs are able to make with patients can go very far in the treatment of the whole individual and their family. Secondly, PAs are committed to the medical model and continuing education: two cornerstones of healthcare. The medical model has facilitated healing for hundreds of years by emphasizing a scientific, biologic approach to health. And continuing education ensures PAs stay on the cutting edge of practicing medicine. The rigorous science curriculum at the University of Florida was not only fascinating, it helped prepare me for the intensity of PA school and ongoing education. Although the ride was bumpy at first, I soon developed study techniques that helped me to finish strongly. A long time ago, I dedicated myself to continued learning and professional growth in the health field. And as a prospective PA student, I'm excited to see the high value PAs place on continuing education, and I believe the PA medical model is ripe to benefit from the current growth spurt in healthcare R&D. I'm pursuing a career as a PA over a career in nursing, rehabilitation, or as a doctor because my ambition is to become a primary care practicioner. Although I think the nursing and therapy models are effective complements to the medical model, my goals are to be the first contact for patients, to develop strong relationships through long-term continuing care, and to emphasize preventative medicine and patient education. Also, the extended period of time required to complete medical school and the additional burdens physicians typically accept would conflict with other personal goals of family life and dedicated community service. I'm aware that I plan to enter a primary care field that is struggling. PCP's are strained by shrinking numbers of practicioners and swelling patient populations. Reimbursement is relatively low, and the evolving clinical skills needed to treat a large scope of health concerns are difficult to maintain. Nevertheless, I believe PAs are a part of the answer to the primary care problem in the US, and, alongside physicians, will continue to form the backbone of healthcare delivery. As an aspiring primary care PA, I anticipate becoming involved in the coordination of free and reduced-cost healthcare at one of the volunteer clinics, like the Wildflower Clinic, in the Jacksonville area. In closing, the strength and attractiveness of the PA profession have become apparent to me through the way Physician Assistants combine teamwork, a focus on the medical model, and the ability to engage patients in one on one relationships. This blend, unique in the medical field, provides for a rewarding career and many satisfied patients.
  6. Hello! I graduated from undergrad several months ago, and after deciding not to spend the next 5 years in a biomechanics lab I decided PA was for me. However, now that time has come to finish that CASPA application, I am really struggling with the concept of the personal narrative. I do not even know what PA schools are really looking for, especially when speaking of my strengths versus my goals as a PA. If anyone has any suggestions for me I would be very grateful. Hope everyone has been enjoying their spring! -Katie
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