Jump to content

CASPA 2013-2014 Cycle

Recommended Posts

Hi guys, as this year's application process continues please let me know if you have any questions regarding Mercy, applying, interviewing, etc. When I applied last year I spoke to several older students that were very helpful and I would like to reciprocate that help to the next year's class. If you have questions you can ask on the forum here or in an inbox, whichever you prefer. Just keep in mind that I am a current student and the work load is immense so it might take me a few days to answers any questions that you may have. Good luck! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi PAlove77!

 

Thank you for offering your help! How is the interview? I know it is a group interview. I have never been in a group interview, wonder what it will be like. How do you like Mercy's program so far? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One quick response before I start studying for Pharmacology! 

 

The group interview was great. They split you up into groups of three and have two faculty interviewing all three of you together. They will rotate which one of you answers first so it is fair for everyone. Six questions total if I remember correctly. General questions, such as why Mercy, why PA, why not another medical profession. The best advice I can give for the interview is: (1) Dress professionally. Even though you are interviewing for a school, you should treat this like a serious job interview. If you don't dress professional you will have to overcome a first impression. (2) Be yourself and stay calm- answer the questions you would answer, not what you think they want to hear. (3) Know what a PA is. You will be surprised the amount of people interviewing who can't accurately describe what a PA is or does. One side note, don't be negative to other professions. I was asked why I applied to PA school and not to medical school, and I kept it to that I like the way a PA can laterally move. Turns out both faculty members interviewing me were MDs! Imagine if I had talked bad about medical school!

 

PA school is tough. It is so hard. But it's hard for a reason. If I knew this stuff already I wouldn't be in school- I would be out there practicing. Everyone starts from somewhere in medicine, and unfortunately it is a tough start, but I love it. I love learning, and Mercy has done a great job so far. This program focuses on primary care, serving the underprivileged, and follows a biopsychosocial method- keep that in mind. 

 

I don't want to scare anyone away from applying, because I want you all to apply and want to come here because this program is amazing, but PA school is a big decision and you need to make sure that it is right for you. That can be tough to know for sure before actually getting here, but from my point of view I can say before applying and deciding to attend PA school make sure you are ready to put your entire life into the program. You will be in class all day, studying all the time, losing sleep, losing social and fun time, BUT if this is what YOU want to do and you're determined it is all worth it I promise!

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey I am interviewing on November 4th as well.  PA Love I am so grateful for all of that information.  I attend Mercy currently for undergrad at the Dobbs Ferry campus.  People talk and I have heard that their graduate programs, including PA, are very unorganized which makes it a lot harder to complete.  Is this true, coming from a current PA student? Are the faculty involved and dedicated?  Does it feel like the program is smooth and not unorganized?  Do you feel like you will be prepared?  I would love to attend Mercy because I live in Brewster, NY so I could commute...it is an hour away.  Speaking of that, some people have told me that would be difficult to commute because of how demanding the program is.  Do you agree?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Michelle092 I'm really glad you are thinking of applying to Mercy! The first semester we had to commute to the Dobbs Ferry campus for Anatomy lecture and lab so I've been to that campus too and think it's great. 

 

With regards to your question that the program is unorganized, it's definitely not so unorganized to a point where it is hard to complete- I haven't heard of anyone failing out because of that, but the schedule does change a lot because our professors are still practicing. I think what you're hearing is that we don't get our monthly schedule of classes and exams until the end of the previous month, so if you ever want to try and plan something like a doctor's appointment or a weekend trip you have to literally wait until the last minute which I wish was different, but I understand that my teachers are busy working and their schedules change. And if the schedule changes, they do let us know.

 

With the faculty, they are very involved with us. In fact, Lorraine Cashin, our director, teaches several classes and has been teaching two other classes as well because one of our professors had to go home for a family emergency for a bit, which I think is great. I have heard from other programs that their directors aren't involved, don't teach, don't see students often, which is not the case with Professor Cashin- she is GREAT and ALWAYS wants to talk to us and help us if we need it. We have director's meetings with her as a class at the end of every month to talk about anything we want- if we want something different, if there are problems, etc. which is a good way to keep communication flowing between the students and the faculty. 

 

Regarding your question about being prepared, I am assuming you mean for the PANCE which I can't totally answer now, because yes you learn alot during the didactic year in the classroom but talking to older students they say that rotations are really the year that allows you to really get the information down. So far, however, I believe they are doing a great job with teaching me what I need to know. In fact we had a couple of Neurology lectures last week and the lecturer, a neuro PA, would be lecturing and stop and say to us "I've seen this so many time on my boards", "the boards love asking about this disease", or "they will ask you a question in this format" which is helpful.

 

I don't have a huge experience with commuting very far, but there is a wide range of people who drive here from different places. Personally I live about 8 minutes away from school because I knew that, even though I didn't want to live in the Bronx, I wanted to stay on campus to study every night and I didn't want to have to drive an hour home every night at 11 PM. I am also not a morning person so if I ever accidentally slept past my alarm clock I won't be too far away and be able to make it to class. There are a lot of people who commute from Jersey, Manhattan, and places north of here like White Plains, and they always complain about the trains and the traffic. But if you want to commute from what I have heard it is definitely doable, you just have to get up early so you can get to class on time. Most days this semester we start at 9 AM. If you are worried about losing time, one thing that I know people do when they're stuck in traffic is listen to the lectures they have recorded on their phones, so even though they're stuck in traffic they could still do some studying. 

 

Hope this helps!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You have been incredibly helpful.  I really appreciate it.  I am going to assume that is in fact what people meant with the unorganization.  But, that seems minor.  I would probably end up commuting the hour there.  I don't mind getting up early...plus if classes start at 9AM I'd have to get up at like 6:30 which isn't the worst.  What time do classes usually end? Seriously, thank you again.  I will let you know how my interview goes on November 4th.  How long did it take after your interview to hear back?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't know.  I mean I could but I am afraid it will interfere too much and cause not needed stress, you know?  But, I don't think they have housing for us...not positive though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@michelle092 I took less than a week for me to get my acceptance letter, but it varies..I believe some people waited over a month to hear but I think it averaged about 2 weeks for most people. 

 

Our schedule varies so I can't really say when classes end for sure each day. Clinical Medicine is the big class you take every semester that is really the reason it varies because it is all guest lectures. Last semester we had a few late lectures until 9 PM and one that lasted almost all day on a Saturday. This semester we have 8 classes so its usually a start time of 9 or 10 and goes until 5 each night. We haven't had any late lectures yet, but we've only gotten through two different components so far, so we'll see. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh wow okay.  Yeah, driving an hour home after a 9PM lecture, to be back up at 6:30 would be kind of sticky, but if it's not all the time then it's do-able.  I'm also thinking...commmunting in the bad weather (snow).  PA school is definitely not something you can miss.  I have a feeling I'll have to get a place nearby...maybe in a town outside the city.

 

It's nice to talk to you and know that you actually have the time to help other students.  Some people make it seem like you won't see or talk to anyone when you're in PA school. Haha, so thanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Welcome to the Physician Assistant Forum! This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Learn More