Physician Assistant Studies Program

Welcome to the SHP Physician Assistant Studies Program
2017 Scholarship Banquet
2017 White Coat Ceremony
PAs jump for joy
click to see our PA students in action with the SHP Splash page
PA Class of 2016 helps Noah - See more in Spring 2015 Splash
PA Students Volunteering for the SHP FunD Run
UTMB Physician Assistants take TAPA
PAs aren't afraid of a challenge
Join the SHP PA Program today
Request information on our UTMB SHP PAS program today


The physician assistant (PA) field is a challenging, rewarding career choice for those who are genuinely interested in medicine, sensitive to the needs of patients and committed to the delivery of quality medical care. The profession evolved in response to an appeal to extend the delivery of primary care medicine and, since its inception in 1965, has had a profound impact on the quality of health care.

Mission Statement

To develop and graduate academically and clinically exceptional physician assistants.


Physician Assistant Studies is a master's level degree curriculum that recognizes the emerging status of the physician assistant (PA). The PA must think like a physician, be educated in the same fashion, have genuine interest in the patient, possess medical curiosity, work within legal and medical limitations, and be prepared to treat any disease entity regardless of age, gender, race, social status, or sexual preference. In order to prepare the PA for this comprehensive role, the physician assistant program provides the necessary experiences in clinical practice, research and professional services.

PAS Video from C-SPAN

AAPA President John McGinnity, MS, PA-C, DFAAPA, appeared on C-SPAN's Washington Journal on Saturday, Nov. 8, to talk about the valuable roles PAs play in today's healthcare system. He explained to patients and viewers how PAs are educated and that they practice medicine every day in every medical setting and specialty. McGinnity also fielded calls from patients, PAs and healthcare professionals from around the country.

Watch video here

Program Goals

  1. Maintain and develop quality clinical rotation sites to promote exposure to a variety of patient care settings.
    • UTMB PA students not only train at UTMB's own hospitals and clinics, but at a variety of clinical settings and facilities in urban, rural, and metropolitan areas of the state in family medicine, women's health, pediatrics, surgery, and general internal medicine.
  2. Maintain a 95% or better graduation rate for students entering
    the UTMB PA Program.
    • In the past 5 years, only 2% of UTMB PA students who matriculate have not graduated.
  3. Provide an exceptional education to Physician Assistant Studies students and maintain a PANCE first-time pass rate above the national average.
    • UTMB's full-time PA Program faculty have well over 100 years of clinical experience combined! They come from diverse clinical experiences in primary care and are respected in their specialty areas, such as cardiology, infectious disease, pediatrics, rheumatology, hepatology, orthopedic surgery, neurology, and research. Currently, over 35% of full-time PA Program faculty possess doctoral degrees.

Program Accreditation Status

At its July 2017 meeting, the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA) placed the University of Texas Medical Branch Physician Assistant program, sponsored by the University of Texas Medical Branch, on Accreditation-Probation status until its next review in June 2019.

Probation is a temporary status of accreditation conferred when a program does not meet the standards and when the capability of the program to provide an acceptable educational experience for its students is threatened.

Once placed on probation, programs that still fail to comply with accreditation requirements in a timely manner, as specified by the ARC-PA, may be scheduled for a focused site visit and/or risk having their accreditation withdrawn.

Specific questions regarding the Program and its plans should be directed to the Program Director and/or the appropriate institutional official(s).

PANCE First Time Pass Results