Physician Assistants (PAs) are highly skilled health care professionals educated in the medical model who practice medicine. PAs can work in any clinic setting to extend physician services, complement existing services and aid in improving patient access to health care. (CMA Toolkit) Learn more →
Accepted! UofT BScPA Student Carolyn S (@thenwopa)
Carolyn is an incoming UofT PA Student. She is originally from Thunderbay, Ontario and has opted to document her journey on her Instagram @thenwopa.
Carolyn’s Pre-PA Stats
University of Toronto, PA Consortium
# of Attempts:
2nd time applicant, successful on 2nd attempt
Honours in Biology with concentration in Neurosciences
Calculated over 5 years (I went back to school because I was rejected after my first time applying)
3.0 out of 4.0 OMSAS scale
Note:due to covid 2020 winter grades didn’t count, so it decreased to 2.89 out of 4.0 on the OMSAS scale
Health Care Experience Hours:
Ward clerk on a surgical turned COVID unit:
transcribe written orders, ensure the Medication Administration Record Sheet (MARS) were up to date, and help in any other way I could. 800+ indirect patient care
I worked in the home care department where we performed blood draws, ECGs, worked in clinic, pt homes, long term care facilities and correctional facilities. 2700+ hours and direct patient care
My interests/hobbies include:
Swimming, hiking, fishing and spending time with friends.
Medically, I absolutely would love to remain in the north and work in the hospital!
Why I decided to pursue the PA profession
I always wanted to pursue a career in healthcare, and it was only 3 years ago I discovered Physician Assistant.
Since that pivotal moment I dove head first into how I can become apart of such an amazing community of healthcare workers.
I’m very excited to become a PA as I believe this profession suits me perfectly, I love working in team based environments and having time to really focus on patient centred care.
In addition, the flexibility really allows for continuous learning which I think is incredibly important in an ever-changing healthcare field. This flexibility also allows me to create a life outside of work which ultimately translates to greater life-work stability and job satisfaction.
What I think helped me stand out on PA Admissions
I like to think that my HCE as a phlebotomist helped me stand out in my application. I think my position was unique (home care) and it gave a different perspective than working in a facility.
The patient atmosphere changed day-to-day and we sometimes had difficult patients (group homes, inmates, palliative to name a few).
During the interview process I really pulled from my experience in this position and used it as my strength, I also believe being from the north helped as I see daily how people struggling with healthcare here.
My tips for Canadian Pre-PA Applicants
My advice for pre-PAs who are applying would be to really show the admission committees your passion and dedication to the profession.
Utilize your strengths in your application and MMI to show them who you are and how you will be a great PA.
Many people may want to be in healthcare or have this or that experience but HOW does this make you a better provider and HOW are you going to use it to help your patients.
Making yourself stand out is more important than having the highest GPA or number of hours possible (although still try and do your best in these sections). Keep trying and don’t give up!
Hi! I’m Anne, a Canadian Certified Physician Assistant working in Orthopaedic Surgery.
I’ve been writing about my PA experience since starting my PA journey and I’m excited to share CanadianPA.ca as a resource to help you learn about the role and impact of Physician Assistants in Canada.
This blog is my way of helping you, the way others have helped me, discover the PA profession and pursue a career that I love.