Physician Assistant graduates earn 100 percent pass rate


The 2017 Physician Assistant graduates. Credit to Marywood Marketing and Communications.

Tatiana Tell, Contributor

Marywood University’s Physician Assistant 2017 graduates achieved a 100 percent pass rate on their national exams.

The Physician Assistant program began admitting students in 1998. This is the first time the program graduates earned a 100 percent, scoring higher than last year’s national average of 97 percent.

Physician Assistant students are required to pass the Physician Assistant National Certifying Exam (PANCE) in order to be licensed to practice nationwide. Before students can take the PANCE, they must undergo proper training and graduate from an accredited program.

Dr. Lori E. Swanchak, Physician Assistant program director, explained how hard work and dedication lead to the graduates’ success. She stated that the program is full time and 24 months in length.

“It’s pretty intense,” she said, “The entire first year is in the classroom, the didactic phase, and the second year starts clinical rotations.”

Justine Samanas, Physician Assistant clinical director, stated that she was “incredibly proud” of the 2017 graduates.

“We hope to keep the momentum of the 100 percent pass rate, but our program is not just about passing boards,” she said. “It’s really about developing well-rounded students that work well with patients, have great clinical skills and knowledge.”

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