Preparing you to provide quality health care

Are you looking to take the next step in your medical career? Becoming a Physician Assistant is a great option. You’ll have the advanced training to collaborate with one or more physicians and be able to examine, diagnose, treat, and counsel patients. There is a significant need in health care for high-level professionals. At CUW, we strive to prepare you to provide quality health care in a respectful, caring manner. If you value the same things we do, consider pursuing your Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies with us.

Credits117
Highlights
  • Small class sizes
  • Interprofessional
  • State of the art labs
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Program Overview

About our Physician Assistant program

The Physician Assistant (PA) Program at CUW prepares students to become competent physician assistants who provide high quality health care in a respectful, culturally sensitive, caring and knowledgeable manner. CUW PA graduates are committed to caring for patients in mind, body and spirit with an emphasis on continual lifelong learning.

Your studies will be a combination of didactic and clinical courses. The didactic portion is held on our Mequon campus and provides your foundation for the clinical year by exploring the basic sciences, clinical medicine, and behavioral medicine. We believe it is essential to begin putting your knowledge into practice as soon as possible in order for you to grow as a health care professional. You’ll get a variety of hands-on experiences through 11 months of clinicals. Clinical rotations must be taken in family medicine, internal medicine, general surgery, women's health, behavioral medicine, pediatrics, emergency medicine and two elective rotations. While the majority of your rotations will occur in Wisconsin, our Director of Clinical Education may work with you to pursue out-of-state options.

Your courses will delve into the realms of human anatomy, physical examination and history. You'll also cover pharmacology, physiology/pathophysiology, clinical skills, and issues in health care. The overarching theme of your education will be an emphasis on preventative medicine and primary care. In order to facilitate your clinical skills and overall experience, we have a simulation lab and recently renovated cadaver lab on campus. You’ll get to learn in a small class setting (no more than 30 students) and receive personalized instruction from our dedicated faculty. Upon graduation, you’ll be eligible to sit for the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination (PANCE).

Program Highlights:
  • Small class sizes with personalized instruction
  • State-of-the-art cadaver lab
  • Multiple interprofessional educational experiences
  • Opportunities for service learning and community service within the curriculum and as a student society
  • Simulation lab
  • International rotations available
The following learning experiences are incorporated into the curriculum:
  • Self- awareness and implicit bias training
  • Empathy, dignity, inclusion and diversity training
  • Interprofessional learning experiences, including collaboration with School of Pharmacy and School of Health Professions
  • Active listening and effective communication training
  • Basic ultrasound training
  • TeamSTEPPS training
  • MAT Waiver training
  • Mandatory Reporting training
  • Sex Trafficking Awareness training
What to Expect

Physician Assistants (PA) are licensed health care professionals who practice medicine in collaboration with an MD or DO. PAs in conjunction with their collaborating physician provide patient care by obtaining histories, performing physical examinations, diagnosing injuries and illnesses, prescribing, assisting in surgery, educating patients on prevention as well as their conditions, and ordering and interpreting lab and radiologic results. PAs work in a variety of settings including hospitals, clinics, universities, governmental services, and industries.

Graduates must successfully complete the PA program that is accredited by the ARC-PA and pass the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination (PANCE) in order to obtain a license in the state(s) they desire to practice. Upon graduation, there are opportunities to work in all the different specialties of medicine. PAs are required to complete 100 hours of continuing medical education every two years and continue to pass the Physician Assistant Recertifying Examination (PANRE) every ten years to maintain certification.

Alumni & student testimonials:

I graduated from CUW with my Bachelor's degree in May of 2017 and chose to stay at CUW for PA school, which started five days later. I knew that I was embarking on a challenging and strenuous journey, and CUW felt like home. It’s the best decision I could have made. The staff was amazing, my classmates truly became family, and I received an outstanding education. I wouldn't trade it for anything.

-Karina Klotz, Class of 2019

I am now a practicing physician assistant with an orthopedic surgery group and I have CUW PA program to thank for that. The staff through this program helped prepare me for life as a PA and to stand out from other candidates for my dream job. The incredible staff, beautiful campus, and friends I gained along the way is why I am happy to be an alumni of this program. 

-Nicholas Beaudoin, Class of 2018 

I am in my 2nd year and am currently completing my clinicals. I initially chose CUW’s program because of the family atmosphere I felt on my interview day, the small class size and opportunity for international rotations. Throughout my time at Concordia, the faculty have always been approachable and encouraging. Even during the pandemic, they made sure we were well prepared for our clinicals and made extra efforts to check in with us! With having 30 students in our cohort, I got to know my classmates well and have made some lifelong friends! 

-Shanna Mogden, Class of 2021

As I attended CUW for my 4 years of undergraduate studies, it was a no-brainer that CUW was where I wanted to complete my graduate education. CUW has always felt like home to me, and it was easily apparent that the faculty and staff care about me as if I were family. I have never met a group of people (CUW PA faculty and staff) so dedicated and passionate about ensuring the success of their students. It never seemed to be about them teaching medicine to students as it was about them preparing their soon-to-be fellow colleagues to work along their side in making a difference in the lives of patients. CUW is truly a special place, and I never have had, have, or will have any doubt that it is the best institution to learn to become a physician assistant.

-Chris Kornowski, Class of 2020

What I appreciate most about the CUW PA program is having faculty and a program director who truly cares for their students. Not only do they motivate and challenge you to be successful, but they also show compassion and genuine concern for your personal circumstances. I cherish my experience and the bonds that I have created. 

-Brianna Jackson, Class of 2021 

I chose to pursue PA school at Concordia University because I felt that I truly resonated with their mission statement which is to help students develop in mind, body, and spirit. From my very first day on campus, to now, a second-year student, I can confidently state that Concordia has exceeded my expectations in the implementation of their mission. In addition to the superb education with which we are provided, the faculty and staff also endlessly support each student in both their personal and professional development. I am extremely grateful to be attending a school that is genuinely dedicated to each student’s success and well-being.

- Sarah Vander Loop, Class of 2021

Licensure / Certifications
Graduates take the PANCE exam after successful completion from the program. Licensure is required in all states. States have established standards of practice for the physician assistant profession. We will provide you with the contact information for the Wisconsin State Medical Board for licensing information.

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