PA STUDENTS • WITH CASEY

Accepted! Casey, UofT BScPA Student (@caseytheypa)

Casey is an incoming University of Toronto BScPA Student. You can follow her journey at @caseythepa.

Casey’s Pre-PA Stats

Accepted: 

  • University of Toronto, PA Consortium

Education:

  • University of Western Ontario – Bachelor of Health Sciences in Major Rehabilitation Sciences

For my undergrad, I took a Bachelor’s Degree in Health Science with a Major in Rehabilitation Sciences. I took this because I knew I wanted to be in a health-related field, but I was unsure of what exactly I wanted to do. This gave me a solid understanding of our healthcare system, the social determinants of health and contributed to my decision to pursue the PA profession.

GPA:

  • My cPGA was around 3.46 out of 4.0 on the OMSAS scale, the last 2 years of my undergrad were my strongest years.

Health Care Experience Hours:

  • Physiotherapy Assistant at an LTC center for about 130 of my hours – I worked in collaboration with the physiotherapist and other PTAs to assess patients, perform treatment plans and run exercise classes. At an LTC home.
  • I worked as a “Direct Support Professional” at Community Living I had about 1200 hours there when I applied, which is group homes for people with intellectual disabilities and accompanying comorbidities. This was a direct patient experience. Some of the roles include attending to each person’s unique medical needs, specialist appointments, providing accurate documentation, medication administration, including some controlled acts, assisting in end-of-life care, connecting the people we support to the community and providing necessary resources, assisting in activities of daily living and much more. A huge part of this role is advocating for the people we support. I was fortunate enough to be on a “care team,” where I was worked closely with a physician, nurses, social worker, and other healthcare professionals. I saw the importance of interprofessional collaboration and how it impacts patients. I learned so much from the people I support and the healthcare professionals I worked with.

My Interests and Hobbies:

  • I am a very active person, I love sports (both playing and watching them) and working out
  • I have 3 brothers and a golden retriever named Riley
  • I love cooking and trying new foods
  • I love travelling, my favourite places I have travelled are Australia, Vietnam, and the West Coast!
  • I am very social and I love spending time with family and friends
  • I have spent every summer since I was younger up North near Parry Sound

Why I decided to pursue the PA profession

I picked PA for a multitude of factors. I have always been interested in pursuing medicine. Like many other pre-PAs, I was seriously considering medical school until I discovered the PA program.

I love the fact that PAs contribute so much to the healthcare system. I have some family members and people I support at my job with complex health needs, and I have seen the gaps in our healthcare system first-hand.

I appreciate the positive impact PAs have on our healthcare system by decreasing wait times, helping prevent physician burnout, and increasing the quality of care.

“I was ecstatic to find a role where I can practice medicine and make such a great impact on the quality of care people receive.”

The ability to move laterally through specialties was very exciting to me, as I can learn about different specialties and diversify myself as a healthcare practitioner. I am so excited to help trailblaze the profession and be a part of an interprofessional healthcare team!

What I think helped me stand out on PA Admissions

I think what made me stood out is that I tried to be very personable and draw from my unique personal and professional experiences.

While writing my supplemental applications, I wanted to tell the admissions committee a story so they get a better picture of who I am and how I would be a good fit for the profession.

I believe my thorough understanding of the healthcare system, combined with my healthcare experience and genuine appreciation for the profession allowed me to convey my passion to become a PA to the admissions committee effectively.

My tips for Canadian Pre-PA Applicants

1. The application process is quite daunting and seems like a lot but have fun with it. Try to remind yourself that it is exciting that you have this opportunity. I remember when I was preparing for interviews, I would start to feel the nerves kick in and I would try reminding myself how exciting this opportunity is by talking to friends and family about all the things I am looking forward to in the PA profession.

2. Use your resources. There are SO many amazing resources out there. Reach out to PA students and other pre-PAs to ask questions, practice for MMIs, etc. The PA community is a very welcoming, encouraging community and everyone wants to see you succeed. It also made me that much more excited to be in the application process. I do not think I would be where I am right now without all the different people I reached out to throughout the process.

3. Be yourself and tell YOUR story! Take time to reflect and dive into why you want to become a PA and what characteristics you have that will make you a good PA. The admissions panel sees many applications, so show that you are enthusiastic and use your uniqueness to your advantage during the application process and MMIs.

Connect with Casey! (@caseythepa)

Follow Casey on Instagram!

Now its your turn!

Thank you Casey for sharing your incredible journey to gaining acceptance into PA School!

Have questions? Leave it in the comments below.