Applying + Reapplying to PA School

Emily is a soon-to-be PA student and has a personal blog. Follow along her journey at emilyannpa.wordpress.com and on Instagram: emily.a.pa

In light of the application season drawing to a close and interview season beginning, I’ve included tips for applying & reapplying for PA school through CASPA.

  1. Personal Statement
    Now that you’ve made it to the point of applying for PA school, use this section to tell your story! A strong personal statement can land you an interview. This needs to be the section of your application that you dedicate the most time to. As my mentor Ousmane says to all of my writing,  “so what?”. You’re given 5000 characters to prove why you’re deserving of a spot in their program. Tell them your journey into medicine and how it molded you into a successful candidate.

  2. Take advantage of additional space
    CAPSA includes additional sections to list volunteer and work experience. Instead of listing the job description, really use it to paint a picture of what you learned through the experience! Tell them about the skills you’ve gained. This goes for any other section with additional writing space. Use them all to your advantage to stand out.

  3. EDITING
    By the time you’ve complete your CASPA application, you’ll be eager to press that submit button. I urge you to take a few days to have mentors, colleagues, and even friends read through each section. Don’t let something like this keep you from an interview invite. I strongly suggest you have your personal statement edited by professionals such as myPAresource. It’s an additional cost that’ll bring peace of mind once you finally click submit!

  4. Choosing LORs
    In the stress of it all it’s easy to overlook this section, but it can make all the difference! As previously mentioned, you’re only given 5000 characters to explain why you decided to pursue becoming Physician Assistant. Which doesn’t exactly provide ample space to also discuss your extracurriculars or your characteristics as a colleague. Be sure you choose LOR writers who are just as excited as you are to help you become a PA. For example, an MD who wrote an LOR this cycle went above and beyond to discuss how my hobbies and humor have the ability to make me a successful provider. I truly believe it’s been beneficial!

  5. Enjoy your HCE
    Use your HCE for more than hours on your application- ask questions and expand your knowledge! I can honestly say that I was horrible about this last year! I wanted to get from point A to point B as quickly as possible – but it didn’t happen. Since last cycle, I chose to be more appreciative of my opportunity to work with girls on a path similar to mine as well as providers who have been just as hilarious and kind as they are knowledgeable. (ILYSM Bad B’s At B) Talk to your providers and coworkers! There is something to be learned from everyone in the healthcare team.

Let me know if you have any additional questions or requests for certain topics.

Emily