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BruceBanner

Arcadia alum here, I'll answer any questions

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I'm an alum from Arcadia, a few classes back. Ask away and I'll give you the straight dope. It's a strong academic program. Arcadia has been in the top 3-4% of PANCE scores by school since 2011 I believe. We had 3 guys who scored perfect or near-perfect in my class. There are some things however you won't like and some things you can do to streamline your experience. 

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How are clinical rotations set up? Does the student have any say where they can go? I have a family and a young daughter so I can't really go out of state and leave them. I had emailed someone from another program and they pretty much told me to look elsewhere as they can not guarantee that I won't be sent out of state. Thanks!

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There are no guarantees. You fill out a "dream sheet" but at the end of the day it's where they have room to send you. You shouldn't be farther than 2 hours drive each way---if so sometimes there is student housing or Arcadia will put you up in a hotel.

 

FYI this is pretty much the case at all PA programs.

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I'm an alum from Arcadia, a few classes back. Ask away and I'll give you the straight dope. It's a strong academic program. Arcadia has been in the top 3-4% of PANCE scores by school since 2011 I believe. We had 3 guys who scored perfect or near-perfect in my class. There are some things however you won't like and some things you can do to streamline your experience. 

Can you elaborate on the last sentence?

You also mention that it's a strong academic program. In your experience, did you find that the strong academics translated well to strong application? What were your thoughts on the Friday clinical days?

 

Thank you for reaching out to incoming students like myself. 

 

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Class of 2012

  • Total number of applications: 2400
  • Total number enrolled: 100
  • Average Overall GPA: 3.68 (range 3.3-4.0)*
  • Average Science GPA: 3.6 (range 3.3-4.0)*
  • Average GRE (new): 305 combined-verbal and quantitative,

    4.25-analytical

  • Average GRE (old): 1150 combined-verbal and quantitative,

    4.25-analytical

*Approximately 95% of admitted students have GPAs that fall within this range. Applicants with exceptional clinical experience, defined as working three years or longer as a health professional (i.e. RN, PT, OT, Pharmacist) with a GPA outside of this range are also encouraged to apply.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am wondering if you know of any classmates that were admitted outside of the average GPA because of their exceptional clinical experience. 

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Can you elaborate on the last sentence?

You also mention that it's a strong academic program. In your experience, did you find that the strong academics translated well to strong application? What were your thoughts on the Friday clinical days?

 

Thank you for reaching out to incoming students like myself. 

 

 

Strong academics translates into a strong board pass rate. That's what matters. Your #1 goal while in school is to pass exams. There will be many of them, and you will likely fail a few. But don't worry, everyone does. Just focus on passing those exams, and you'll make it. Find a method of studying that works for you. Don't stress too much about all the other busywork they have you do. 

 

Friday clinical days are glorified shadowing. 

 

Regarding the things you may not like....staff there can be a bit militant. Their policies aren't always fair, and there is little in the way of forgiveness if you mess up. Just go into it with the attitude that it's like the academic military. For 2 years, you gotta bend over and take whatever they give you. Most PA programs are like this though. 

 

Also, make friends with upper classmen. They will make your life soooo much easier ;).

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Class of 2012

  • Total number of applications: 2400
  • Total number enrolled: 100
  • Average Overall GPA: 3.68 (range 3.3-4.0)*
  • Average Science GPA: 3.6 (range 3.3-4.0)*
  • Average GRE (new): 305 combined-verbal and quantitative,

    4.25-analytical

  • Average GRE (old): 1150 combined-verbal and quantitative,

    4.25-analytical

*Approximately 95% of admitted students have GPAs that fall within this range. Applicants with exceptional clinical experience, defined as working three years or longer as a health professional (i.e. RN, PT, OT, Pharmacist) with a GPA outside of this range are also encouraged to apply.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am wondering if you know of any classmates that were admitted outside of the average GPA because of their exceptional clinical experience. 

 

 

 

Yeah, me, and a few others. My CASPA GPA was like 3.45. I had 2 years of clinical research at major academic hospital with a prominent surgeon, killer letters, 5 publications, a few internships from undergrad and a summer of EMT work. There were a couple others who were RTs and we had a Nuclear Med Tech. 

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Strong academics translates into a strong board pass rate. That's what matters. Your #1 goal while in school is to pass exams. There will be many of them, and you will likely fail a few. But don't worry, everyone does. Just focus on passing those exams, and you'll make it. Find a method of studying that works for you. Don't stress too much about all the other busywork they have you do. 

 

Friday clinical days are glorified shadowing. 

 

Regarding the things you may not like....staff there can be a bit militant. Their policies aren't always fair, and there is little in the way of forgiveness if you mess up. Just go into it with the attitude that it's like the academic military. For 2 years, you gotta bend over and take whatever they give you. Most PA programs are like this though. 

 

Also, make friends with upper classmen. They will make your life soooo much easier ;).

 

Speaking of exams, how is the testing schedule? Spaced out once a week or blocked all together at the end of the month? 

When I went in for my interview, the Director told us exams are computerized and results are shown afterwards.

 

Are there any nearby clinics you'd recommend volunteering at? I'm not sure how doable it is, but I'd like to regularly volunteer in the community during didactic year. 

 

What did you and your classmates do for fun?

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Speaking of exams, how is the testing schedule? Spaced out once a week or blocked all together at the end of the month? 

When I went in for my interview, the Director told us exams are computerized and results are shown afterwards.

 

Are there any nearby clinics you'd recommend volunteering at? I'm not sure how doable it is, but I'd like to regularly volunteer in the community during didactic year. 

 

What did you and your classmates do for fun?

 

Once things get going, you will be taking a MINIMUM of 1 exam per week, sometimes up to 3. Testing is all computerized on a "lockdown" browser on your laptop. You do get your score as soon as you submit, with the exception of some practical exams. Many exams are curved depending on how the class did.

 

I personally wouldn't recommend shadowing, you'll find that you are too fried and stressed during the summer and fall to do anything but study and relax a little. There is some built-in shadowing during didactic year; at least there was in 2010-2011. 

 

For fun most of us went out on weekends, and there was a lot of drinking. I played disc golf and joined a gym. Once didactic year is over people regained a "normal" life...like more family/gym time, hobbies, etc. Clinical year is pretty tolerable.

 

I don't know about the Glenside campus, but the Delaware campus/area is boring as hell. Not much to do but go out, hit the beach once in a while, and play some disc golf.

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Class begins next Thursday (Glenside) and I'm getting more anxious as it gets closer. Everyone I speak to tells me that the first few months are going to be the hardest, then it's gonna fly by.

I chose Arcadia because of their strong study abroad program but as I accepted my first loans, I had a small freak out. 60k for year 1 is a hard number to stomach. There's not much of anything I'm asking here.. just typing out some worries. 

 

What are your tips and advice on the cadaver dissection lab?

 

I read somewhere, some time ago, that laptops are passed out to students during exams for testing purposes. However, I'm not sure if I recall this correctly. Can you clarify this? 
And on laptops, what specifications did you find were necessary for a personal laptop for class and note taking? I was thinking of getting a Chrome Book to supplement a large, heavy Dell that I would rather not lug around, but didn't know if it would meet the needs of school. 

 

Just skimmed the wiki on disc golf. Interesting. From my experience, the Glenside campus is in a quiet area and probably won't have many exciting / fun places to enjoy. But Philly is nearby as well. 

 

Thank you for the responses, BruceBanner. I appreciate your help. :)

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Yeah the stories are true. Summer is brutal. It's the equivalent of academic boot camp. Luckily, though, you will be in Glenside and wont have a 90 minute commute to Philly like the Delaware folks do.

 

Regarding cadaver lab, wear old clothes or crappy scrubs. You will stink. Make sure you understand anatomic relationships, like what structures intersect and neighbor each other. Make sure you can identify things in the lab before you go. Study powerpoints and your text primarily, or study guides if they are available from other students.

 

As far as I know they are still "giving" students laptops to keep (comes out of tuition), but that may have changed. We all got Dell latitudes which were mandatory throughout the program.

 

Good luck!! You can always PM me with specific or sensitive questions.

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Hi- I am a first year in their mph/pa duel degree program. So my first year isn't that bad its all research. I have been talking to the second years( and my mentor) because they are going through gross and what not now, but I hate to bug them because I know they are crazy busy. Is there anything I should do now on my own to make my life easier next May?

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Thanks for being here to answer questions. I need some insight with my p.a program process. I graduated in 2012 however i decided in my last year I wanted to pursue a career as a p.a. I also did not graduate with the best gpa so for the last two years i have worked in the healthcare field and gained healthcare experience. I have also dedicated this time to retake course I did not do well in and also fulfill the requirements for various p.a programs. I have been able to do do well in these course receiving A and B's. I will take my gre's this august. My main doubt in this process is my gpa..is it a waste of time to take courses over trying to improve my gpa? what more can i do to standout ? I am extremely passionate about this career option but as with anything I have doubts after reading all these amazing stories. Any insight is appreciated thank you! 

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can you explain more about how the curriculum is set up? do they teach organ based/systems based learning? I can't seem to find it on the website. 

 

also, what exactly is the standardized pt simulation training? will we practice on a dummy or is it an actual person?

 

thanks in advance!

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I have an interview at Arcadia in September and I was wondering if you have any insight into the interview process? As far as what to expect or anything in particular that I should be prepared for?

 

Thanks!

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I didn't know the best place to post this question (I'm new to this forum), so this is my second post:

 

Hey guys, I just got called for an interview for the dual degree program. She gave me two options for the interview-one in november and one in september. Do they do rolling decisions? I have an interview in new york in november too, so I didn't know if choosing the later date will affect my ability to get in. I am from the West Coast so it is a really expensive plane ticket. 

 

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Hey, i have a more specific question about the program.

 

I've sent my deposit for a seat in the May 2016 starting class. I'm in need of a new laptop well before then and was wondering if you, or anyone, is aware of the software needed for the program? I've always had a Mac and I'd like to get a new Mac - but if the programs set up with Microsoft and that's what they highly recommeneded kind of deal - I'll be changing my plans.

 

Thanks for answering all these questions ! :)

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Hi BruceBanner!

 

I was recently accepted to the DE campus and have several questions:

  • How quickly post-grad did you find your first job?
  • Did you find your first position via clinical rotations?
  • Do you recommend studying prior to beginning the program, if so what?

Thank you so much for answering questions! I am so excited to start this journey.

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I interviewed at Glenside and really liked the program. When I asked one of the staff about placement and success in finding employment after graduation, I was told that the majority of the class had one or two job offers at graduation and the rest were employed within six months of earning their degree. Is this true?

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Hi 

I am currently looking to apply to Arcadia's PA program.  I am a strong student, however, when I initially graduated high school I was not focused and did poorly in some basic classes I was taking (thinking I was going to go to law school).  This was over 10 years ago though!  Since then, I have maintained As and Bs throughout my associate degree in Diagnostic Medical Sonography and my bachelor's in Allied Health, however since CASPA calculates EVERY class you have ever taken, I am concerned this is going to greatly impact my application.  On the upside I have been employed full-time as a sonographer for 6 years now, so my patient care experience will hopefully be a plus.  What do you think the chances Arcadia won't completely overlook me?

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