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Hello everyone! I am a newly engaged applicant who's been accepted to an inaugural program starting in January (fingers crossed nothing falls through) and am looking for advice from any PA-S or PA-C on whether to plan a wedding during didactic year to get married during clinicals or plan during clinicals and get married post graduation? I come from a cultural family so wedding's tend to be big and I am assuming planning will take at least a year or 6 months prior to the date. For what it's worth my program is set to graduate March 2023 and my fiancé is projecting 2022 to be the best for him, financially. Would love any insight from spouse PA's who had to make this decision or even attendees in rigorous programs. 

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I got married 2 weeks after taking the PANCE. My wife did the majority of the wedding planning and we had a wedding planner which was well worth the money. Did not feel very stressed. Still was involved in making decisions and meeting with vendors, but my wife knew that school was number one importance and was fine with that. I had a classmate get married over Christmas break with a small wedding so it’s doable. Just don’t forget about right after graduation you have the pance to worry about and should be your number 1 priority. Worked out well for me to study for 2 weeks then take it. Found out I passed the week of the wedding. you could say it was a great week, even for 2020! 

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Can someone get through PA school while planning a wedding?  Sure...but you will be putting increased stress on yourself in what is already going to be a stressful 2-3 year period.  Doesn't mean don't do it, just understand the ramifications.

The biggest thing to remember is that nobody owes you anything because you are getting married.  Assuming you choose to plan a wedding during PA school doesn't entitle you to leave class or rotations early, do poorly on exams, or other assignments.  You are entering PA school with the intention of being involved in the healthcare of people...therefore you will literally make "life and death" decisions.  Don't take that lightly and put your wedding before that.  You owe it to your future patients to be present in both body and mind for PA school and learn everything you can.

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On 11/16/2020 at 10:34 AM, PA2O18 said:

I got married 2 weeks after taking the PANCE. My wife did the majority of the wedding planning and we had a wedding planner which was well worth the money. Did not feel very stressed. Still was involved in making decisions and meeting with vendors, but my wife knew that school was number one importance and was fine with that. I had a classmate get married over Christmas break with a small wedding so it’s doable. Just don’t forget about right after graduation you have the pance to worry about and should be your number 1 priority. Worked out well for me to study for 2 weeks then take it. Found out I passed the week of the wedding. you could say it was a great week, even for 2020! 

Congrats all around! I certainly didn't forget about PANCE, that's why I thought it's valuable to ask those experienced which year they felt is more doable---last thing I'd want is to jeopardize my education after all time and money spent. I do agree that a wedding planner would be a huge help in this scenario!

On 11/16/2020 at 6:17 PM, mgriffiths said:

Can someone get through PA school while planning a wedding?  Sure...but you will be putting increased stress on yourself in what is already going to be a stressful 2-3 year period.  Doesn't mean don't do it, just understand the ramifications.

The biggest thing to remember is that nobody owes you anything because you are getting married.  Assuming you choose to plan a wedding during PA school doesn't entitle you to leave class or rotations early, do poorly on exams, or other assignments.  You are entering PA school with the intention of being involved in the healthcare of people...therefore you will literally make "life and death" decisions.  Don't take that lightly and put your wedding before that.  You owe it to your future patients to be present in both body and mind for PA school and learn everything you can.

Absolutely right! Definitely going in with the "school is priority" mindset---I'm proud of where I made it to and won't sacrifice that. Hoping others found a healthy balance that could share. 

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7 hours ago, copticmare said:

Congrats all around! I certainly didn't forget about PANCE, that's why I thought it's valuable to ask those experienced which year they felt is more doable---last thing I'd want is to jeopardize my education after all time and money spent. I do agree that a wedding planner would be a huge help in this scenario!

Absolutely right! Definitely going in with the "school is priority" mindset---I'm proud of where I made it to and won't sacrifice that. Hoping others found a healthy balance that could share. 

Finding a healthy balance of anything during PA school is difficult. Extremely so. Any additional thing that you take on outside of your coursework will make PA school more challenging and have the potential to compromise your ability to be successful. That’s just the reality of the situation. 

Wedding planning is stressful. Especially if you’re planning a large wedding and want to be involved in the process. The ideal situation would be both planning the wedding and getting married after your graduate.

If you absolutely have to get married during or right after PA school, I would plan during clinical year and get married after your graduate. Planning during didactic sounds like it could be a disaster. Everyone deals with didactic year differently. Some people do well and are able to keep up without too much trouble. Others really struggle and have to study constantly. In my experience, it’s difficult to know which one of those categories that you fall into until you’re in PA school. 

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On 11/20/2020 at 10:37 AM, hmtpnw said:

Finding a healthy balance of anything during PA school is difficult. Extremely so. Any additional thing that you take on outside of your coursework will make PA school more challenging and have the potential to compromise your ability to be successful. That’s just the reality of the situation. 

Wedding planning is stressful. Especially if you’re planning a large wedding and want to be involved in the process. The ideal situation would be both planning the wedding and getting married after your graduate.

If you absolutely have to get married during or right after PA school, I would plan during clinical year and get married after your graduate. Planning during didactic sounds like it could be a disaster. Everyone deals with didactic year differently. Some people do well and are able to keep up without too much trouble. Others really struggle and have to study constantly. In my experience, it’s difficult to know which one of those categories that you fall into until you’re in PA school. 

Certainly right! I've definitely had the conversation with my s/o that I really have to see how rigorous my program will be and whether I can handle the stress of wedding planning. I also believe that life shouldn't completely stop just because you're in school as long as you're honest with yourself about what you can/can't take on. Thanks for offering your year recommendation!

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A woman in the class ahead of mine planned a wedding. She was also the only person in her class to fail the PANCE on her first try.

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