USF physician assistant class repeats perfect pass rate

Dec. 17, 2013 FORT WAYNE, Ind. - For the fourth consecutive year, graduates of the University of Saint Francis Physician Assistant master’s degree program achieved a 100 percent first-time pass rate on the Physician Assistant National Certification Exam (PANCE), administered by the National Commission on the Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA).

This marks the seventh 100 percent first-time pass achievement for the USF Physician Assistant graduates in the last 10 years. Since the inaugural masters degree graduating class in 2004, 221 graduates have completed the PANCE, with 98.19 percent passing on the first try, surpassing the national average for first-time board pass rate, said Department of Physician Assistant Studies Chair and Associate Professor Dawn LaBarbera, Ph.D., PA-C.

“We are proud of the dedication of our students and the ability of our faculty to deliver an outstanding grasp of the knowledge required of a graduate student in Physician Assistant Studies,” Dr. LaBarbera said. “Our problem-based learning program develops critical clinical thinking skills in our students that can be successfully applied to the board examination, but more importantly, to their future patients.”

  The University of Saint Francis, founded in 1890 as a comprehensive university in the Catholic Franciscan tradition, offers more than 60 undergraduate and 14 graduate programs in five schools: The School of Health Sciences, School of Arts and Sciences, Keith Busse School of Business and Entrepreneurial Leadership, School of Professional Studies and School of Creative Arts. More than 2,300 students from a broad geographic region attend USF for its academic excellence. The university has a regional campus in Crown Point, Ind.

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