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Health Professionals Scholarship Program (HPSP) - PHYSICIAN ASSISTANT

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***THIS IS A SCHOLARSHIP ANNOUNCEMENT***

***THIS IS NOT AN ANNOUNCEMENT TO OBTAIN A JOB WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS.***

Health Professionals Scholarship Program (HPSP) - PHYSICIAN ASSISTANT

 

Announcement Number

AIG-17-SMH-1919450

 

 

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This is awesome!!! I work at the VA now and did not know about this. It used to be just for nurses.

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I have an automatic search for any PA jobs on USAJobs and this one came up.  I apply this year but I'm always looking at PA jobs and trying to evaluate market saturation or lack thereof. 

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Has anyone gone through this scholarship program that can tell me a little more about it? I know they would pay your tuition and possible stipend for living expenses? Is the pay comparable to the private market, and/or job listings on the VA website for salary? Is it really worth the min 2 year service agreement for loans vs. a possible better paying private market job where you could just pay of your loans quickly? It states Location negotiable, but do you get to pick your specialty at all?  


 

 


Any insights would be great!


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This is an email I received in response to my questions about the scholarship program.

 

 

 

Once you graduate and are placed within VA, your pay will be the same as other PAs in the VA with equivalent experience and education. Locality also plays a part in total pay.

 

This program is not retroactive in payment. Payments start Fall 2017.

 

As part of the acceptance into HPSP, the applicant must sign a mobility agreement stating that they are willing to relocate at their own expense for placement at the discretion of VA. While we do work with you in the placement process to meet our needs and yours, there is no guarantee. We request your top 5 placement options 6-months prior to graduation and work with you to try and place within your Top 5 list but once again, there are no guarantees.

 

We top off any existing grants and scholarship up to 100% tuition and approved fees. There is also a monthly stipend of $1125 while you are in school as well as a once a year stipend of $1125 for books.

 

Let My Supervisor Know How I’m Doing

 

Thank You,

Scott

 

Scott Dixon

Program Specialist,

     Visual Impairment and Orientation and Mobility Professionals Scholarship Program (VIOMPSP)

     Health Professionals Scholarship Program (HPSP)

VHA Scholarships and Clinical Education (10A2A4)

Office: (623) 465-0650

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This would include specialty of choice as not being a guarantee along with location. 

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Just for clarification is this an undergraduate scholarship with an interest in becoming a PA or a graduate scholarship for someone accepted to PA school ?

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Hello everyone..

 

New to the forum, but saw this post and thought I would give you a few ideas about this program. As I used to work in the VA and know a few things, if you permit, I will enlighten you.

At this time, the VA is very understaffed with PA's which is why I'm changing my career path. The VA pays on average around 80K if you meed the minimum standards listed in job postings. There are also, living allowances that bring you up to certain standards of living in certain states/cities. The benefits that also come with these positions are incredible as federal retirement is exceptional and if you want to look further into it, it's called the TSP or Thrift Savings Plan.

 

This scholarship mirrors the Department of Defense USPHS scholarship where for your tuition, you are locked into a contract upon graduation with the Department of Veterans Affairs. They will pay your tuition and more than likely some of your medical books/instruments, and fees, however I would get the extras down to make sure. Being that it's a part of the federal government, they will itemize everything in your contract, trust me on that.

 

I would highly encourage anyone looking for such a scholarship to work within the VA as it won't be hard to make it to the top. Pay for PA's and Psychiatric MD's/DO's is becoming closer to the private market as they (VA) realize that they are losing out on excellent providers. As you will have federal status once you graduate from this program, to see what the VA is paying, utilize USAJOBs.gov and use the search feature along with your dream city/state to see what PA's salaries are going for. Not too long ago I saw Cardio-Thoracic PA positions in Houston,Texas was paying 140k plus benefits.. Not bad at all.

 

If you are a veteran, let me know and I will walk you through your paperwork process in order to get your points for competitive purposes. Also, if anyone has any questions about what the VA world is like, I will be happy to talk to anyone offline, just send me an email or a number.

 

I hope this scholarship will become written in stone as I've about a year of pre-reqs to get done before I can apply.

For clarification, I am a Marine Vet, who just left the mental health service line at the VA and now work for the Dept.of the Navy in Mental Health.

 

Good Luck,

Gavmalav

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Just for clarification is this an undergraduate scholarship with an interest in becoming a PA or a graduate scholarship for someone accepted to PA school ?

It is for someone accepted into PA school.

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The VA pays for PA school (tuition, books...) and provides a stipend and you agree to work for them for two years.  Their pound of flesh is they guarantee you two year employment not WHERE you will work nor ANY specialty.  This isn't medical school so there isn't a need for specialty.  One can request a deferment to do a fellowship but that change much of where you're placed.  So let's say I ask for a deferment to do an EM fellowship, then I come in and they put me in the VA in BFE doing IM...that's the way it goes.  It's not a bad deal especially if you're going to an expensive school.  Two years out of school you walk away without any significant school debt.

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Hello everyone..

 

New to the forum, but saw this post and thought I would give you a few ideas about this program. As I used to work in the VA and know a few things, if you permit, I will enlighten you.

At this time, the VA is very understaffed with PA's which is why I'm changing my career path. The VA pays on average around 80K if you meed the minimum standards listed in job postings. There are also, living allowances that bring you up to certain standards of living in certain states/cities. The benefits that also come with these positions are incredible as federal retirement is exceptional and if you want to look further into it, it's called the TSP or Thrift Savings Plan.

 

This scholarship mirrors the Department of Defense USPHS scholarship where for your tuition, you are locked into a contract upon graduation with the Department of Veterans Affairs. They will pay your tuition and more than likely some of your medical books/instruments, and fees, however I would get the extras down to make sure. Being that it's a part of the federal government, they will itemize everything in your contract, trust me on that.

 

I would highly encourage anyone looking for such a scholarship to work within the VA as it won't be hard to make it to the top. Pay for PA's and Psychiatric MD's/DO's is becoming closer to the private market as they (VA) realize that they are losing out on excellent providers. As you will have federal status once you graduate from this program, to see what the VA is paying, utilize USAJOBs.gov and use the search feature along with your dream city/state to see what PA's salaries are going for. Not too long ago I saw Cardio-Thoracic PA positions in Houston,Texas was paying 140k plus benefits.. Not bad at all.

 

If you are a veteran, let me know and I will walk you through your paperwork process in order to get your points for competitive purposes. Also, if anyone has any questions about what the VA world is like, I will be happy to talk to anyone offline, just send me an email or a number.

 

I hope this scholarship will become written in stone as I've about a year of pre-reqs to get done before I can apply.

For clarification, I am a Marine Vet, who just left the mental health service line at the VA and now work for the Dept.of the Navy in Mental Health.

 

Good Luck,

Gavmalav

 

 

 

Thank you for a detailed post. My question is while applying, it asks for 

  1. Evaluation Recommendation -  VA Form10-0491E which seems like a recommendation form. Who fills it? and how many are needed to apply for this scholarship?
  2. I am not currently employed by VA and neither i am a Veteran.
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Thank you for a detailed post. My question is while applying, it asks for 

  1. Evaluation Recommendation -  VA Form10-0491E which seems like a recommendation form. Who fills it? and how many are needed to apply for this scholarship?
  2. I am not currently employed by VA and neither i am a Veteran.

 

Look over the application form https://www.va.gov/vaforms/medical/pdf/vha-10-0491g-fill.pdf

 

Evaluation & Recommendation Forms (VA Form 10-0491e)

3a. From academic program where you will be or where you are currently enrolled (Required)

 

3b. From a person who has known you for a minimum of two years (Required)

 

3c. From your VA supervisor or equivalent person if the supervisor is no longer available(only needed if you have worked for the VA in the last three years)

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Does anyone know if there is a minimum GPA requirement to qualify?  My current GPA after one semester is just under a 3.0, and I see there is a question regarding whether or not my GPA is between 3.0 and 4.0

 

 

 

THANKS!

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for the evaluation form do i upload it or have the person filling it out fax it in?

 

thanks!

They prefer it be uploaded with your application. If for some reason the person evaluating you isn't comfortable handing it back to you, then there is an address on the top of the form where they can send it to.

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They prefer it be uploaded with your application. If for some reason the person evaluating you isn't comfortable handing it back to you, then there is an address on the top of the form where they can send it to.

 

thank you so much!! and under required documents, it says answers to questionnaire. do you know what that is? thanks again!

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Look over the application form https://www.va.gov/vaforms/medical/pdf/vha-10-0491g-fill.pdf

 

Evaluation & Recommendation Forms (VA Form 10-0491e)

3a. From academic program where you will be or where you are currently enrolled (Required)

 

3b. From a person who has known you for a minimum of two years (Required)

 

3c. From your VA supervisor or equivalent person if the supervisor is no longer available(only needed if you have worked for the VA in the last three years)

 

If you are not enrolled in a current academic program and have not yet started PA school, how do they expect someone from the program you will be at to fill out the recommendation if they don't really know you?

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thank you so much!! and under required documents, it says answers to questionnaire. do you know what that is? thanks again!

I believe it is the form "Occupational Questionaire" that you can get if you can't apply online. I'm sure the questions will be asked while you are applying online through their portal on usajobs.gov

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If you are not enrolled in a current academic program and have not yet started PA school, how do they expect someone from the program you will be at to fill out the recommendation if they don't really know you?

This is from the actual application checklist pertaining to the Recommendation and Evaluation form.

3a. From academic program where you will be or where you are currently enrolled (Required)

 

 

But I guess if you are not currently enrolled anywhere, you could email the person in charge to see if a previous academic faculty person can fill one out. Here is the email  CAVHS.DEU@VA.GOV

 

I understand why it would be silly to get a recommendation from your future academic faculty that doesn't really know you. 

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Deadline for the scholarship has been extended to 5/1/17. Applicants will know if they have been awarded the scholarship early June.

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Hello colleagues, 

 

Thanks everyone for their inputs. If I recently finished an MPH degree while in PA school, will this scholarship cover the loan from that degree as well? (In other words, should I also submit tuition info aka Academic Verification -  VA Form10-0491 for the MPH degree) in addition to that of PA school?

 

Thanks in advance !

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Hello colleagues, 

 

Thanks everyone for their inputs. If I recently finished an MPH degree while in PA school, will this scholarship cover the loan from that degree as well? (In other words, should I also submit tuition info aka Academic Verification -  VA Form10-0491 for the MPH degree) in addition to that of PA school?

 

Thanks in advance !

The scholarship only covers from Fall 2017 on during PA school. Nothing retroactive.

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Thank you JC40.

 

For those of you familiar with how this scholarship works, once the app is closed and approval notices sent out, can a recipient decline or negotiate their offer?  (Maybe because of dislike with part of the offer package) - Or once you are selected, are you obligated to accept the contract?

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How would this work if you are almost finished with your first year? Would you get the monthly stipend for the previous months and cost of tuition you already paid?

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