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PENNSYLVANIA: Penn State PA Program 2016-2017

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Received a email that my application is complete and ready for full review. I hope waiting so late didn't hurt my chances.

 I didn't receive that email until 9/27 and received my interview offer two days ago! It is not too late. 

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Received a email that my application is complete and ready for full review. I hope waiting so late didn't hurt my chances.

Hello everyone,

 

To clarify PSU's admissions process, it is never "too late" to apply unless the mid-January deadline has passed. Our program continually accepts and reviews applications through that date. Additionally, and probably most importantly, the program keeps seats available through its last interview. In other words, if you are invited for an interview (be it the first interview in August or the last interview in the February-ish time frame), you are always interviewing for an open spot in the program. With that said, it is always better to apply sooner rather than later because acceptances are also offered throughout the application cycle (i.e. more seats are available at the beginning of the cycle than the end). Waitlist status and declines are also notified on a rolling basis.

 

To those who may be waitlisted along the way- there is hope! I was waitlisted for both the Class of 2016 and 2017. When I was already in the process of re-applying for a third time to the Class of 2018, I received word just 2 days before classes for 2017 began. So hang in there!

 

I encourage everyone to read through the 2015-16 cycle thread to get an idea for the ebb and flow of our program's admission process as well as additional insights from current students.

 

Hope this helps. Best of luck!!

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Hey guys,

 

2nd year PSU Student here. Willing to answer any questions you may have! Feel free to post here or shoot me a private message.

 

 

Good Luck!

Samuel

How would you say the faculty and exams are and overall your experience during the didactic year?

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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How would you say the faculty and exams are and overall your experience during the didactic year?

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

I'm a first year student, so technically in didactic year, and so far, the year has been a whacky whirlwind. We're in the midst (but inching towards the end) of our third rough week in a row. The exams in general are tough and all too frequent, but the faculty and staff in general, root for your success. I will say that they're incredibly kind and will go out of their way to help you. The thing that gets me through all these exams and crazy times is the fact that when I interviewed here and I met the faculty here, I decided they were the type of PA I want to be when I practice, which is why I chose their (demanding) method of education.

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Hi all,

 

I received a general question about what the program is like during clinical year.  For those of you who are fortunate enough to receive an interview, I will start by saying we try to have at least one second year student available to answer questions and provide prospective during the lunch session with current students on interview day.

 

Clinical year is exactly that- all clinical- no more classroom!!  That is not to say that teaching does not happen during the second year- on the contrary, lots of teaching takes place both informally with preceptors and, at some sites, formally through occasional lectures.  We have 9 rotations- 8 required and 1 elective.  Our program, and, thus, our rotations, emphasize primary care medicine.  With the student's input, all rotations are coordinated through the program which means, unlike quite a lot of other programs, the student does not need to try and set up rotations up on their own- which is quite a process and something you will easily see you do not have time for as a first year student.  It also ensures the sites have been vetted by our faculty which means you can be confident in the education and experience you will get at each location.  You may choose to have all, most, or only 1 of your rotations at the Penn State Hershey Medical Center (HMC) and its outpatient offices (you will always have at least one because the Family Medicine rotation must be completed at an HMC outpatient clinic-this is a GREAT thing!!  I encourage everyone to check out the Penn State Health website for more information on our history with, and commitment to, the specialty of family medicine).    Or, you can be offsite for nearly all of your rotations.  Our program has many sites within 1 hour of campus.  Those that are a bit further have housing accommodations.  Sites range from suburban (such as our main campus and quite a few of our nearby clinics) to rural (near the State College, Pa area) to small city (in the Reading, Pa area).  You can also work with our clinical coordinator to arrange for rotations in your hometown or at a site in a town or state that you would like to go to (i.e. Florida or Hawaii anyone?).  Generally speaking, your first several rotations will be within an hour of campus while you get used to being on rotations.  For the remaining 2 semesters of clinical year, however, rotations further away can take place.

 

Each rotation is 5 weeks.  On the last Friday of each rotation, all students return to the main campus here in Hershey for "Call Back Day" at which time you take your end of rotation exam (based on the rotation you just completed) as well as other graded and non-graded activities.  The exams during clinical year are based on assigned, mostly textbook, readings and average approximately 500-800 pages per 5 week rotation.  There are also several smaller assignments to complete during the rotation but these are very manageable.  

 

An advantage of being affiliated with an academic medical center is that there is a true commitment to learners- from attendings, to residents, to even the patients (who are not only used to, but enjoy, being cared for by students).  For personal and logistical reasons, I have had all of my rotations at HMC sites so far and have had wonderful experiences.  I will be going offsite later on in the year but have no worries that these will not be equally as wonderful.

 

I hope this helps.  Feel free to ask more specific questions about second year if I have not covered it, or clarified, here.  Continued luck to all of you!!

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Thanks ST@PSU for the amazing insight and advice.

 

I have a question about "course in progress".  Did Penn State want us to send them our grades directly or did they want us to self report them?

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Thanks ST@PSU for the amazing insight and advice.

 

I have a question about "course in progress". Did Penn State want us to send them our grades directly or did they want us to self report them?

That question is probably better answers by Caryn. Or maybe one of the first years. When I went through CASPA (and my classmates), it did not have the capability of updating things like I believe it does now. From my experience, so long as you have no more than 2 prerequisites "in progress", that should not affect your consideration for an interview based on all your other merits. That caveat DOES NOT apply to current undergrad seniors, of course, who are expected to have at at least one semester "in progress" and possible another one "planned".

 

Hope this helps as well.

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Hey there all, 

 

My name is Samuel Wyld and I am another 2nd year PA student here at Penn State. Unfortunately, because of schedules, I am not on the forum as much as last year. If anyone has any questions, I'm here. In addition, since I am more commonly on e-mail, please feel free to shoot me a message and I will likely get back to you sooner. The email is: swyld@hmc.psu.edu. 

 

Just to sift a few things out, and possibly save people a few keystrokes, students do not have active input on admissions, but we can answer questions about the process and what school is like after you start. 

 

Many people have questions about their own competitiveness in applying. Unfortunately, students to not have special insight into this. The school does, however, publish very detailed numbers on the stats of accepted students, so this should be your guide. I will say, however, that we have people in our class that both barely meet, and far exceed the minimum requirements for entry, so, if you meet the requirements, go for it and apply. If you feel self conscious about some of your numbers, address it in your essay. I had an absolutely abysmal first year of college, but brought it up after that, and I'm here. So, questions about specific scholastic situations or meetings of the admissions committee, should be addressed to the program. Anything else, I'm here! 

 

So, please feel free to shoot me a message if you have questions! 

Samuel Wyld

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Thanks ST@PSU for the amazing insight and advice.

 

I have a question about "course in progress".  Did Penn State want us to send them our grades directly or did they want us to self report them?

 

Upon completing any course in progress, simply email an unofficial student transcript to psupaprogram@hmc.psu.edu

 

Best wishes!

Caryn

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When do you usually hear back from Penn State after submitting the supplemental application. I applied to 9 schools and have heard back from all of them except Penn State!

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When do you usually hear back from Penn State after submitting the supplemental application. I applied to 9 schools and have heard back from all of them except Penn State!

 

I submitted my secondary application on Sep 2nd, and was offered an interview on the 12th.

I hope you hear something soon.

Good luck!

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I have not heard anything from Penn... but it looks like they are recruiting? ISU has been the only program that sends regular status updates. These other programs drive me crazy with the silence.

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I have not heard anything from Penn... but it looks like they are recruiting? ISU has been the only program that sends regular status updates. These other programs drive me crazy with the silence.

I am sorry to hear that you feel that has been your experience. For everyone following, please know that Penn State is very open and honest about the admissions process. All those that have interviewed usually hear within a month but are also encouraged to contact the program if there is a need to know sooner (i.e. an offer of admission from another school). Those who have applied but have not yet been invited for an interview remain under active consideration throughout the admission cycle and will be notified, usually by mid-March, as to their status.

 

Having been through the application process, and waiting game, two (nearly three) times, I know how hard this is. As difficult as it may seem, try to stay focused on continuing to do the things that will improve you as a candidate while playing the waiting game- that way you'll be prepared for whatever comes your way! Best of luck to all!

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Hi all!

 

Does anyone know what the best way to contact admissions is regarding whether or not a prerequisite course will be accepted? I have emailed the PA program a few times with no response (I know they are VERY busy), but I just don't want to submit my application if the course will not be counted. It's a film analysis course that I took at my university and it fulfilled the Gordon Rule writing requirement, so I assume that it would be counted toward 3 of the 6 English credits, but I wanted to double check. Please let me know if anyone has any suggestions.

 

Thanks!

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Hi all!

 

Does anyone know what the best way to contact admissions is regarding whether or not a prerequisite course will be accepted? I have emailed the PA program a few times with no response (I know they are VERY busy), but I just don't want to submit my application if the course will not be counted. It's a film analysis course that I took at my university and it fulfilled the Gordon Rule writing requirement, so I assume that it would be counted toward 3 of the 6 English credits, but I wanted to double check. Please let me know if anyone has any suggestions.

 

Thanks!

Emailing is the best way to contact them. If you are able to include an excerpt from the school's course catalog which states what fullfills its writing requirement, you could do that as well. Did CASPA except it as a writing intensive? Is it marked on your official transcript as such? If either of those is true, it should be OK although I cannot confirm. Hope this helps.

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Received the news that I was wait listed. I will admit I'm sad, but not defeated. There's still a chance and I hope to join this amazing program!  Does anyone have any insight on how the wait list works or if there are any students that were moved off the wait list in previous classes? Any help/hope would be greatly appreciated!

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I've heard that some people do come off the wait list so there is still hope! I haven't heard back from my interview yet. When did you interview?

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