University of Holy Cross

Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies

About the Program

The Master of Science-Physician Assistant Studies Program is a 28-month, 112 credit hour, full-time graduate medical education program designed to prepare students for the Physician Assistant National Certification Examination (PANCE) and for a successful career as a physician assistant. The program consists of two phases: didactic and clinical. Graduate coursework included in the didactic phase includes clinical medicine, clinical laboratory, pharmacotherapy, anatomy, pathophysiology, and evidence-based practice, clinical skills, preventive medicine, and health care professional issues. In addition, the ethical responsibilities of the profession, behavioral aspects of health, roles and responsibilities of the physician assistant, and global aspects of health are covered. Students complete 8 clinical rotations during their second year. Focus areas include: family medicine, pediatrics, women’s health, emergency medicine, internal medicine, general surgery, behavioral health, and an elective. Students are prepared to become licensed professionals and encouraged to serve in primary care areas where the health care need is greatest. The program will generate compassionate and competent healthcare providers who are committed to the profession and who will make significant contributions toward advancing healthcare in the community.

Mission of the Graduate Program

The University of Holy Cross Physician Assistant Program will graduate competent, skilled, compassionate physician assistants who will practice in multidisciplinary teams across all areas of medicine and in all practice settings. Graduates will enhance the community by providing high quality healthcare to populations and communities in need, embracing diversity and cultural context.

Program Learning Outcomes

  • Graduate PAs with clinical knowledge, skills, and analytical thinking to augment compassionate care for patients which is effective, safe, high-quality and equitable.
  • Foster patient care based on respect, privacy, and participation in ongoing professional education.
  • Contribute to the health of the community through health education, outreach and donating volunteer medical services when and where possible.
  • Develop awareness and sensitivity towards various cultural, ethnic, disability and lifestyle variations to effectively meet the needs of all patients.
  • Educate effective physician assistants who work in interdisciplinary teams with physician collaboration striving to serve patients with the highest level of care.

Program Accreditation Status

University of Holy Cross has applied for Accreditation - Provisional from the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA). University of Holy Cross anticipates matriculating its first class in August of 2020, pending achieving Accreditation. Accreditation - Provisional is an accreditation status granted when the plans and resource allocation, if fully implemented as planned, of a proposed program that has not yet enrolled students appear to demonstrate the program's ability to meet the ARC-PA Standards or when a program holding accreditation-provisional status appears to demonstrate continued progress in complying with the Standards as it prepares for the graduation of the first class (cohort) of students.


4123 Woodland Drive, New Orleans, LA 70131 (504) 394-7744 or 1-800-259-7744

A Ministry of the Marianites of Holy Cross: Educating Hearts and Minds

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