MSPA 2019

I am surviving PA school because of these beautiful souls. Here, I will feature my amazing classmates and give you some insight into their personal journeys. 

Disclosure: Please note that all information provided on this page are opinions of my classmates and do not reflect the program that we are enrolled in. 

 

Ashley Lowe, PA-S

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Undergraduate education: Biological Sciences, University of California, Irvine

 Overall GPA: 3.39

Science GPA: 3.17

GRE: Verbal - 151, Quantitative - 150, Analytical writing - 3.0

Total PCE hours: ~ 1,600

Shadowing hours: 192 (Shadowed 1 PA, Facial Plastics & Dermatology)

Volunteer hours: ~1,400 (UC Irvine Medical Center, Anne Douglas Rehabilitation Center, In Home Care Facility, Mission trip to Honduras, Low-Income Family Program)

How many times did you apply?: 3 times!

Age: 27

How many programs did you apply to? 

#1- 7 programs #2- 14 programs #3- ~10 programs

How many programs did you interview with and what were the outcomes? #2- I interviewed with one school and was waitlisted #3- I interviewed with two programs. I was waitlisted for one of the programs, however I later received an acceptance letter. I received my acceptance email shortly after interviewing with WesternU. =)

Were there any helpful resources (books, websites, apps) you used to get through prerequisite courses, the application or interview process? 

1. How to “ACE” the Physician Assistant School Interview.

2. Kaplan GRE Course. I recommend taking the course if you focus better in a more structured classroom type of environment. The course forced me to stay on top of the material and pace myself.

3. Practice interviewing techniques with family and friends and once you are feeling more confident, start to time yourself.

Any other advice for other pre-PA students? Never give up!!! Also, shadow all types of PAs. Lastly, when you are practicing for interviews, try to intertwine personalized stories with your answers.


Erika Fisher, PA-S

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Undergraduate education: San Diego State University, BS in Public Health

 Overall GPA: 3.67

Science GPA: 3.66

GRE: Verbal - 160, Quantitative - 150, Analytical writing - 4.0

Total PCE hours: ~ 1,700 through being a scribe in ER and an orthopedic clinic

Shadowing hours: 50

Volunteer hours: ~300

How many times did you apply?: 1

Age: 26

How many programs did you apply to? 12

How many programs did you interview with and what were the outcomes? 3 interviews. 1 rejection and 2 waitlist decisions. Western emailed me about my acceptance 4 days after their original waitlist decision.

Any red flags on your application? I had one C- for a microbio lab which I repeated and got an A in. I never got asked about it in interviews but I prepared a statement just in case. 

Were there any helpful resources (books, websites, apps) you used to get through prerequisite courses, the application or interview process? 

For pre-requisite courses - I recommend utilizing a tutor for your more difficult courses like Organic Chemistry (if you can afford it, they can get pretty expensive). For interviews, I utilized a book called "How to ace the physician assistant school interview", I would also reach out to any current students for their advice. In addition, if you meet a PA in any aspect of your life, befriend them and keep in contact. Ask to shadow them, offer to take them to lunch and ask them questions. A PA I met at my PCP office become my mentor through those methods; she wrote me a letter of recommendation for PA school and now I'm going to do a rotation with her!

Any other advice for other pre-PA students? There is nothing easy about the path to PA school but it is SO worth it. Do not give up, no matter what!


Lilian Serpas, PA-S

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Undergraduate education: Microbiology, Arizona State University 

Master of Public Health, University of Southern California

Overall GPA: 3.4 Undergraduate | 3.92 Graduate

Science GPA: 3.0

Total PCE hours: 2K but none were clinical application. They were research related for public health research studies.

Shadowing hours: Total of 60 hours (Shadowed 3 PA’s, Oncology and Surgery at Children’s Hospital , and Primary Care)

Volunteer hours: 3K -Clinical Research Studies

How many times did you apply?:  First Time.

Age: 27

How many programs did you apply to? 5 programs

How many programs did you interview with and what were the outcomes? Only WesternU. I got in! I was worried because my background is mostly research based.

Any red flags on your application? I only have a research based background, If I had not gotten in I would’ve joined a Clinical Care Extender Program to get direct patient care experience

Were there any helpful resources (books, websites, apps) you used to get through prerequisite courses, the application or interview process? 

Books- How to ACE the Physician School Interview by Andrew J. Rodican, PA-C. It was very helpful when practicing questions because it gives specific examples and techniques on how to best answer a question without leaving out details that will help you stand out! 

Any other advice for other pre-PA students?

I definitely advice to shadow PA’s and make sure you understand what the profession entails. Learn about the commitment that you will be making for your future. I suggest getting direct patient care experience , because I feel that I would’ve highly benefited going through OSCE’s our first year. Once you apply and get an interview, I suggest getting the book mentioned above to get different perspectives when answering questions. Mock Interviews are perfect because they highlight your strengths and weaknesses and then you can work on what may need more work! Give yourself credit for getting this far! And good luck on applying!


Kaitlyn Spousta, PA-S

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Undergraduate education: Loyola Marymount University

Overall GPA: 3.6

Science GPA: 3.8

Total PCE hours: 1000 hours

Shadowing hours: 40 hours

Volunteer hours: I can’t pin-point exact hours but a lot! (Through LMU and my parish)

GRE: 300

How many times did you apply?:  Once!

Age: 22

How many programs did you apply to? I applied to 11 programs. 

How many programs did you interview with and what were the outcomes? I interviewed at two schools, Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia and WesternU, although I got waitlisted at two other schools

Any red flags on your application?

I did have a few red flags on my applicant: PCE hours and no Biochemistry course. 

I had roughly 1,000 PCE hours. Many programs, for example Stanford University, want more than 1,000/2,000 PCE hours to be considered for acceptance. I also did not take biochemistry during my undergrad education and therefore had to eliminate many other PA schools I would have liked to apply to. 

Were there any helpful resources (books, websites, apps) you used to get through prerequisite courses, the application or interview process? 

For GRE preparation, I used KAPLAN review books and studied on my own the month prior to the GRE. However, I don’t recommend this method. I wish I had taken an in-class prep-course because I could have possibly scored higher on the GRE. 

In regards to the application process, I was fortunate to have my neighbor guide me through CASPA, application requirements, and recommended me have certain aspects highlighted in my application. I attribute my acceptance into PA school to her. She sat on the board of admissions at USC’s PA program and knew what applicants were lacking and where I could excel. She helped edit my personal statement and supplemental essays as well as hold mock interview sessions for me.  

Any other advice for other pre-PA students? 

Trust in the system. BE PATIENT! I submitted my CASPA application at the end of July, received an interview request from WesternU in November, interviewed January 19thand was accepted on March 17th.  The process takes time, do not get discouraged if you don’t hear back right away. Sometimes, no news is good news!


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Mark Karam, PA-S

Undergraduate education: University of La Verne, Biology major 

Overall GPA: 3.89

Science GPA: I think 3.90-94 (somewhere in there I have to check)

Total PCE hours: At application ~ 600 at start of the year over 1000

Shadowing hours: 4 hours

Volunteer hours: About 200

How many times did you apply?:  Twice.

Age: 23

How many programs did you apply to? Eight.

How many programs did you interview with and what were the outcomes? 6 interviews, 5 acceptances, 1 wait list

Any red flags on your application? On the lower end of PCE, didn’t have more than 300 when I began submitting applications.

Were there any helpful resources (books, websites, apps) you used to get through prerequisite courses, the application or interview process? 

Using mock interviews with teachers, academic centers, and others who have applied to PA school.

Mentors, mentors, and uhhh did I mention mentors? Do not be afraid to ask your mentors at school to proofread your personal statement, give you a mock interview, or give you advice on what has worked for other students. You are not the first one to apply to graduate school and the best source are professors who have helped previous students get accepted. Learning centers are incredible for proofreading your personal statement (I used them A LOT because I am not the best writer).

Any other advice for other pre-PA students? I’m not afraid to say it….grades. Make sure your grades are prime because it will show admissions that you are willing to dig into the books and be the best you can be. Healthcare is extremely important, but will (in my opinion) not come into play much until your second year and by then you will have had some experiences to practice skills. When an applicant has excellent grades (not always, I got rejected my first round with a 3.9 because I had 0 HCE) the program will know that you have the study habits to handle the workload. If your grades are strong then adding on the HCE is easier than having HCE, but having to retake classes to bring your GPA up. Also, do not forget that retaking classes will have to be justified, because admissions will ask. Be yourself and do not be afraid to be extraverted. Be respectful and professional, while still showing some individuality. Lastly, make sure your outfit is tailored, ironed, and looks excellent. If a person walks in with an outfit that screams “I don’t care how I look”, why would a program want you to represent them with that attitude. Good luck to you all, and if you have any questions do not hesitate to email me at mourhafkaram@yahoo.com !


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Diba Izadyar, PA-S

Undergraduate education: Foreign Graduate (Iran)/ Nutrition-Dietitian 

Overall GPA: 3.6 | Completed all the prerequisites in the United States with GPA of 4.0

GRE: 310

TOEFL: 195 (This is for foreign grads only)

Total PCE hours: ~2100

Shadowing hours: ~230

Volunteer hours: ~500

How many times did you apply?:  Once.

Age: 29

How many programs did you apply to? Three.

How many programs did you interview with and what were the outcomes? Interviewed at 2, Rejected at 1 and Accepted at 1.

Any red flags on your application? I have no idea about the red flags but it was pretty hard for me to make my application strong because of the foreign grad degree

Were there any helpful resources (books, websites, apps) you used to get through prerequisite courses, the application or interview process? I used “How to Ace the PA School Interview” for my interviews.

Any other advice for other pre-PA students? Anything is possible just you have to work hard!


 
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Yaseen Kady, PA-S

Undergraduate education: University of California San Diego

Overall GPA: 3.45

Science GPA: 3.35

GRE: Verbal: 163 Quantitative: 155 Analytical Writing: 5.5

Total PCE hours: Roughly 3100 I believe. I don’t recall exactly.

Shadowing hours: Roughly 200 I believe as well.

How many times did you apply?:  Once

Age: 23

How many programs did you interview with and what were the outcomes? Interviewed at 2, Accepted at 2.

Any red flags on your application? I had some poor grades in not only a general chemistry course but also an organic chemistry course, I ended up retaking them to get a better grade :)

Were there any helpful resources (books, websites, apps) you used to get through prerequisite courses, the application or interview process? I used “How to Ace the PA School Interview” and the DoseofPA blogspot! Also, for interviews check out “ThePACoach” on Youtube, it’s a very good resource I used to learn about typical questions asked during interviews.

Any other advice for other pre-PA students? Try to get the components of your application organized way ahead of time — this means all of your transcripts, essays, and letters of recommendation. I’m talking like more than three months before you decide to hit submit on your application (which you should also try to submit very early)! Life gets in the way and it’s always best to be organized when it comes to your grad school application! The same goes for preparing for your interview: try to prepare at least 2 months in advance. For me, this meant setting some time aside for self-reflection that helped me craft my narrative not only for the personal statement but also for the personal brand I wanted to display in interviews. Check out the resources listed above for potential interview questions.


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Jazmine Kwong, PA-S

Undergraduate education: University of Southern California, Neuroscience

Overall GPA: 3.43

Science GPA: 3.33

GRE: 305

Total PCE hours: 3,200 (EMT & MA)

Shadowing hours: 608 (Orthopedics, Dermatology/Plastic Surgery, Oncology/Hematology, Interventional Pulmonology, & Pediatrics)

Volunteer hours: 800 (Medical Mission to Africa, Skid Row, Spanish Translator, & Elementary School Educator)

How many times did you apply?:  THREE times!

Age: 24

How many programs did you apply to? My 1st cycle I applied to four programs. My 2nd cycle I applied to eight and my final cycle I applied to twelve programs. I received one interview my 2nd cycle. Five interviews for my 3rd cycle and was accepted to three programs. 

What did I do differently each time? I increased all my hours in volunteering, PCE, & shadowing. I raised my GPA by retaking courses at community colleges and at universities close to home. More importantly, I contacted the programs for feedback and asked for specifics on how I could improve for the next cycle. I received advice on better interview prep and that's exactly what I did! I sought out medical students or recent PA grads and asked if they could ask me a few questions. They didn't know me personally and that made it the perfect mock interview scenario!

Any red flags on your application? I had a low GPA and my hours were lacking my 1st and 2nd cycle. 

Were there any helpful resources (books, websites, apps) you used to get through prerequisite courses, the application or interview process?  ThePAPlatform.com, How to Ace the PA School Interview book by Rodican, PA-C, DoseOfPA Blog, and ThePhysicianAssistantforum.com. 

For more information about my stats and timeline ~ click ABOUT in the menu bar!


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Amir Abdou, PA-S

Undergraduate education: Health Science BS, Cal State Fullerton

Overall GPA: 3.4

Science GPA: 3.5

GRE: Nope

Total PCE hours: 1,888

Shadowing hours: 128 with a Family Practice PA-C

Volunteer hours: 177

How many times did you apply?:  Once.

Age: 27

How many programs did you apply to? 6 programs.

How many programs did you interview with and what were the outcomes? Western was the only interview. But all it takes is ONE!

Any red flags on your application? I had a low GPA my freshman year which I shortly reflected on in my statement. 

Were there any helpful resources (books, websites, apps) you used to get through prerequisite courses, the application or interview process? My number one resource was The Ultimate Guide to Getting into Physician Assistant School, by Andrew J. Rodican. I was also fortunate to have a friend in the Western class of 2016 who gave me a lot of great advice and motivation. For CASPA, I had several trusted friends and my PA-C mentor read over my application and statement numerous times. For the interview, I had a close friend who would grill me with questions constantly. Initially, I was nervous and hesitant however the more we practiced, the more fluid my answers became until I felt comfortable with any question thrown at me. I also watched a lot of videos and read articles on body language/posture and I even took a Linklater voice class before the interview. 

Any other advice for other pre-PA students? Many people want to help but sometimes you have to put yourself out there. For example, if you are looking to shadow a PA-C go inside the Family Practice facility professionally dressed and kindly explain to the receptionist what brings you there. Ask if you could patiently wait in the lobby till the PA-C has a free moment to talk. In my experience, this small step out of your comfort zone could make all the difference and beats asking over the phone.


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Francine Pan, PA-S

Undergraduate education: University of California, Irvine - Biological Sciences

Total PCE hours: ~3700

Shadowing hours: ~30

Volunteer hours: ~500

Age: 25

How many times did you apply?: Once

How many programs did you apply to? 4 (Only CA with continued accreditation)

Any other advice for other pre-PA students?  Ensure that Physician Assistant is the absolute best profession for YOU, not anyone else. Limitless possibilities in healthcare, so RESEARCH and critically evaluate your options. Commitment is key! This journey is not "easy" by any means, but it is definitely rewarding. After you submit your deposit for PA school, spend quality time with loved ones and warn them that you will become MIA for 2 years. Your own loving support system is huge! Some days no one understands your stress, except your classmates. Be kind and help one another. Remember: LIFE HAPPENS regardless of PA school. Prepare yourself mentally, physically, emotionally, etc.


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Yonas Abera, PA-S

Undergraduate education: Natural Resource Management

Overall GPA: 3.4

Science GPA: 3.6

Total PCE hours: 8,000

Shadowing hours: 160

Volunteer hours: 100

How many times did you apply?: Applied twice.

How many programs did you apply to? I applied to 10 programs.

How many programs did you interview with and what were the outcomes? 6 interviews and 2 acceptances.

Were there any helpful resources (books, websites, apps) you used to get through prerequisite courses, the application or interview process? Talking to PAs and PA students is the best resource I utilized for interview. Med school interview books, 46 PA school interview questions from the internet are also helpful.

Any other advice for other pre-PA students? Apply early, prepare enough and feel confident if you got into the interview.


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Molly Sniadach, PA-S

Undergraduate education: Nutritional Sciences/Pre Med at Colorado State University

Overall GPA: 3.8

Science GPA: 3.7

GRE: I decided to not take the GRE, so I was limited on the schools I could apply to.  I would recommend taking it if you want a broader range of schools to chose from. 

Total PCE hours: 3,702 (medical assistant and scribe)

Shadowing hours: 176 (both doctors and PAs)

Volunteer hours: 2422 (the big ones were research, youth coaching, Guadalajara mission trip, and the rest were random volunteer opportunities out in the community. 

How many times did you apply?:  1, but don't ever give up if you don't get in on your first time!!! If you want to be a PA, you will get in sooner or later. The wait is worth the wild!

Age: 26! I had two years off after college before I started PA school. 

How many programs did you apply to? I applied to 11 schools using this website. http://directory.paeaonline.org/  I narrowed the search by looking for the schools close to my home, ones that didn't require the GRE, Spanish, and schools where I had all the prerequisites.  The only school I applied to that I didn't have all the pre-reqs to was Western, but it was my number one choice. Once I got an interview invite, I signed up for those classes online at a community college, but only when I got the interview invite. I wouldn't have done it for any other school, but since Western was my top choice, I was fine with going back to get those credits. 

I don't recommend applying to a school where you don't meet their minimum requirements (GPA, GRE score, volunteer hours, etc).  It's the easiest way for them to rule out applicants when they have 2000 applicants. It will happen, and you will have just wasted some money. ONLY APPLY TO THE SCHOOLS WHERE YOU MEET ALL THE MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS. 

How many programs did you interview with and what were the outcomes? 3, two acceptances, one rejection 

Any red flags on your application? Yes but I'm not going to go into detail. I will say, if you have a red flag then be honest about it!! Whatever has happened to you in your past doesn't always reflect who you are right now. Make the negative situation into a positive one. Talk about that and how that thing has changed you to be a better person today. Don't try to hide it, they will find out, and you will get cut for lying. 

Were there any helpful resources (books, websites, apps) you used to get through prerequisite courses, the application or interview process? Like I mentioned earlier:  http://directory.paeaonline.org/  I used this URL to search for schools and their requirements. I also bought both books by Andrew Rodican called "How to Ace your Physician Assistant School Interview" and "Getting into Physician Assistant School." I read them front to back and they were full of amazing tips for the whole interview process!! Lastly, I got on the PA forum and stalked all my schools and when they were giving out interview invites and acceptances.  I highly recommend you DO NOT do that. It was nice to see what was going on when you never heard back from schools, but it made feel like crap on a daily basis. If I wasn't getting an interview invite and others were, it would stress me out. Just a heads up. 

Any other advice for other pre-PA students? Try not to get too caught up on the process. If you truly want to be a PA, and you are qualified to do so, you will be one. Even if it takes a while for you to get into a school. Practice your interview questions over and over again and add a personal example to every question. Show don't tell. Talk with people who have made it and ask questions.


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Jeffrey B. Steed II, PA-S

Undergraduate education: Chapman University

GRE:141 Comprehension, 145 mathematics, 4.0 writing

Total PCE hours: > 3500 hours

Volunteer hours: > 50

How many times did you apply?:  2

Age: 29

How many programs did you apply to? In 2 years, about 15-20 programs.

How many programs did you interview with and what were the outcomes? 1 and I got accepted to WesternU.

Any red flags on your application? No, but make sure you have all your ducks in order or else you could miss out on a great opportunity.

Were there any helpful resources (books, websites, apps) you used to get through prerequisite courses, the application or interview process? Getting Into the Physician Assistant School of Your Choice 2nd edition by Andrew J. Rodican is a great resource to my application process and reminded me that no matter what, the worst thing these programs can do is tell you “No.” So keep fighting and for what you believe in and show these programs why you are worthy of getting a spot for their next class.

Any other advice for other pre-PA students? Don’t be discouraged if you don’t get in the first year around.  Always find ways to improve your application and do whatever it takes to stand out from the pack.  Take that time to reflect on who you are and how bad you really want it. 


Brandon Jarosin, PA-S

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Undergraduate education: Biological Science, San Diego Christian College

Overall GPA: 3.7

Science GPA: 4.0

GRE: Didn't take lol

Total PCE hours: 500+

Shadowing hours: 50 in ER

How many times did you apply?:  2

Age: 24

How many programs did you apply to? Two

How many programs did you interview with and what were the outcomes? I got into Western so I did not fly to Boston as my second choice because of preference.

Any red flags on your application? Not that I knew of haha

Were there any helpful resources (books, websites, apps) you used to get through prerequisite courses, the application or interview process? I knew previous students in the program that helped so much with my questions. Now being in the program, I notice there are a lot of websites, media pages, and apps all geared towards PA’s. Its an amazing profession that is expanding rapid due to the high demand.

Any other advice for other pre-PA students? First I would research the profession to see if it interests you. Then meet with a current PA and student to ask them questions about what it takes to be a PA and the rigors of the program. Shadowing them and then gain experience by being a Scribe, Tech, EMT, paramedic etc. 

Final thoughts on what I have learned… Being a PA is not just treating in practice, or performing on exams but rather a lifestyle choice. It is a willingness to learn, educate and service. It’s who we are and that is what makes us unique. I will say this has been the hardest; yet, best decision I have ever made.


Zani Roberts, PA-S

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Undergraduate education: Global Health BA, UCSD

Overall GPA: 3.9

Science GPA: 4.0

GRE: Verbal: 161 (88th percentile), Quantitative: 154 (55th percentile), Analytical Writing: 4.5 (82nd percentile)

Total PCE hours: ~3000. My hours were majority abroad as I worked in Indonesia, Argentina, Honduras and Mexico. This actually prevented me from applying to a few programs (like Stanford) that only accepted domestic hours.

Shadowing hours: None specifically dedicated to PA shadowing, but I worked alongside PAs over the years and felt like I understood what the role was.

Volunteer hours: ~1500 I think. 

How many times did you apply?:  1

Age: 33. I took a “gap decade” after high school, worked and came back to school at 28 to get my BA and then went straight on to PA school.

How many programs did you apply to? 5 (Western U, Yale, GWU, USC, OHSU)

How many programs did you interview with and what were the outcomes?  I interviewed at 3 schools - Western U, Yale and George Washington U in D.C.

Any red flags on your application? Not that I know of.

Were there any helpful resources (books, websites, apps) you used to get through prerequisite courses, the application or interview process? I really only met with a few PAs that I knew - recent grads from USC and a couple working PAs and just picked their brains and asked them questions regarding the application process and interviewing. The information I got was helpful in knowing what to expect, but overall I really didn’t know what to expect until I got here. I didn’t know about all the resources, websites and blogs available or else I would have read them!

Any other advice for other pre-PA students? I was 32 when I was applying and just wanted to get this show on the road, but in hindsight, I wish I had waited to apply the year after I graduated, because I spent so much money applying to and flying out to interview at these schools that I came against obstacles with because I was an undergrad at time of application.

Also - every single person I heard from said to not study anything in the months leading up to starting at Western, but I wish someone had told me to start reviewing pharm and learning antibiotics so at least I knew the names of the drugs and wasn’t so confused and had to cram so hard for our first pharm exam and neglect my other classes.

Also - I would spend some time memorizing the cranial nerves. I had to review but it would be nice to just know bam. CN5 is trigeminal without having to go through my weird mnemonic.

Remember when you are interviewing to just have integrity, even if that means being so honest that you are giving an answer that they might not be looking for. Interviewees get really annoyed hearing that same cookie cutter answer from everyone and are so relieved when an applicant is authentic and honest in the interview.

Another word of wisdom - really stay off the forums. It’s just like cyber cutting to keep looking at them and seeing people interviewing when you aren’t. Get the info you need and get off.

And finally - if you really want to be a PA, you can do it. You just have to persevere. There are a lot of people in our program who applied multiple times and are finally here. That sort of tenacity is truly what you need to get through PA school because it is really really really hard. I see my classmates that applied many times as incredibly strong and resilient students that are going to make incredible PAs. Don’t give up!!


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Carlos Frausto, PA-S

Undergraduate education: University of California, Riverside - Bachelor of Science, Anthropology, Pre-med pre-reqs

Overall GPA – 3.4+ (honestly couldn’t tell you for sure, I had to repeat some classes to cover pre-req time requirements and boost GPA)

Science GPA 3.73 (Thanks O-chem!)

GRE: Did not take the GRE.

Total PCE hours – a ton! I worked as an EMT for 9.5 years full time+, as first-on scene prior to any other responding authority, which helped greatly with patient interviews and assessments!

Shadowing hours (Med Students/MD’s) 60+ while volunteering at the Riverside Health Clinic while attending UCR.

Volunteering: hundreds of hours between Riverside Health Clinic, Volunteer Firefighter/EMT for De Luz Fire Department, coaching various sports (soccer, baseball, BMX)

How many times did you apply?: This was my 3rd cycle of applications, 2nd time interviewing with Western.

Age: Age….let’s just say I’m an outlier in the grand scheme of age range.

How many programs did you apply to? I applied to 5 schools in my last application cycle (4 in So Cal, 1 out of state, but I didn’t follow through on the secondary), granted 2 interviews and was accepted to Western U!

Any red flags on your application? I would have to say my GPA and some outstanding pre-req’s were my biggest or longest hurdles. In my initial college experience, I lacked focus and the determination that I acquired over time and life experience (a very long time…).

Were there any helpful resources (books, websites, apps) you used to get through prerequisite courses, the application or interview process? The most useful resource that I had outside of my own determination, was the help of Michael Haverkamp at Western U’s admissions. Western is the only school who actively reached out to me regarding my application, instead of just sending out a form letter without an explanation. Michael helped guide me in the correct direction, addressing areas that I could improve in and honestly, without his help and input, I more than likely would not be here today.

Any other advice for other pre-PA students?  My best advice is: be determined in your pursuit of your career. It’s ok if you don’t make it on your 1st cycle, 2nd cycle, 3rd etc. DON’T DWELL ON IT – FIX IT. Make sure that you are being the best person that you are capable of being. Reach out to others, volunteer your time, try to get exposure to the field as much as possible. When you do get the opportunity to interview, just breathe. You just need to be yourself. Reflect on why you want to be here and what got you here. Be thoughtful of your answers, and most of all, be honest!

Although a lot of advice was given to taking a vacation before PA school once you’ve been accepted…I say STUDY PHARM! 😊

 

More to come.. Check back later!