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Master of Medical Science - Physician Assistant

Preparing You to be the Next Healthcare Leader

Become a Physician Assistant student at the Mount and begin your healthcare journey to care significantly. Not only will you learn to provide patient-centered care based on current professional practice, but with an added focus on compassion, health equity, service and well-being, you'll develop the skills to connect with patients on a more human level. Coursework covering evolving biomedical, social, behavioral and clinical sciences, and their application to patient care, will help you stay at the forefront of medical advancements, and allow you to deliver safe and evidence-based healthcare. Finally, you'll complete the program with clinical experiences in real world situations, which will sharpen your skills across a full spectrum of medical settings.

Physician Assistant is one of the fastest growing professions in America, helping to fill the critical need for providers in Maryland and nationally. This top-ranking career will allow you to care for patients, prescribe medications, perform procedures, and work in every medical specialty.

The Mount's PA program provides:

  • Training at the best hospitals in the region
  • Preparation to successfully pass the PANCE and become a certified PA
  • Full-tuition scholarships to select individuals through our Care for America program

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PA Profession at a Glance

Highly trained and skilled clinicians, Physician Assistants expand access to medical care. PAs are a vital part of the healthcare team and often serve as the primary provider for patients. PAs work in every specialty of medicine and care for over 500 million patients annually.

Through treating patients, prescribing medications, performing procedures, and taking the time to empower patients through education, PAs transform healthcare.

The Physician Assistant profession is an exceptional career, with working clinicians reporting high levels of career satisfaction based on versatility, work-life balance, salary, length of education, and fulfillment. The demand for PAs is high and on the rise. Reach out to see how Mount St. Mary's University can support your professional journey.

Read more: 9 Reasons to Become a PA

Course Listing

Want to see a full listing of all physician assistant program courses?

View Courses

Top Healthcare Jobs in America #2 U.S. News and World Report
Projected Job Growth 28% U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Annual Median Salary $121,530 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Physician Assistant Program in the School of Health Professions

The Master of Medical Science - Physician Assistant degree is offered through the School of Health Professions. During your time as a student within the school, you'll have access to opportunities and resources such as:

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Care For America

Care for America embodies our dedication to promoting healthcare equity. The program empowers students to become patient advocates and providers of equitable healthcare through health equity courses, immersive learning experiences and clinical rotations. Additionally, Care for America provides scholarship opportunities for PA students committed to working in the most underserved settings after graduation.

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Center for Clinician Well-Being

The Center for Clinician Well-Being offers a wide array of curricular and extracurricular opportunities to support students in developing lifelong habits that promote contentment, resilience, wellness and joy. This initiative proactively helps students build the necessary mindsets and skills to maintain their well-being and prevent burnout throughout their healthcare careers.

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Sharpen Your Skills in a State-of-the-Art Facility

While in the Physician Assistant program, you'll learn in a newly constructed facility offering a leading-edge clinical simulation lab, spacious lecture hall, student collaboration and inspiration spaces, medical library, and café.

Visit the School of Health Professions

Program Events

Online: Physician Assistant Open House

Join us for our Physician Assistant Open House and discover our newest program! This event is the perfect opportunity to learn more about the program and meet our experienced faculty and staff, including Program Director Mary Jackson. You'll have the chance to explore the curriculum, ask questions, and connect with other students interested in pursuing a career as a Physician Assistant. Don't miss out on this chance to take the first step towards a rewarding career in healthcare! Reserve your spot today.

Register for an Open House

Thursday, July 25 from 2-3 p.m.

PA Program News

Mary Jackson, Director of the PA program

MHEC Approves Mount Graduate-Level Physician Assistant Program

The Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC) approved Mount St. Mary’s University’s proposal for a comprehensive two-year graduate physician assistant (PA) program that would help close the health care provider deficit in Maryland.

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Physician assistant graduate program planned for the Mount; Daughters of Charity to host

From the Frederick News Post

Mount St. Mary’s University is in the process of launching a physician assistant graduate degree that is expected to be the start of a new health professions graduate school.

Mount officials say the demand for physician assistants (PA) is high, and thanks to a neighbor up the road, students will learn how to meet this need under a unique roof.

Read more about the PA program from the Frederick News Post.

Accreditation

The Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA) is an independent accrediting body for all PA Programs in the United States. The ARC-PA ensures PA programs meet rigorous standards for the interest of the public and the PA profession.

Mount St. Mary’s University has applied for Accreditation-Provisional from the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA). The Mount’s Physician Assistant Program anticipates matriculating its first class in January 2026, pending achieving Accreditation-Provisional status at the June 2025 ARC-PA meeting. Accreditation-Provisional is an accreditation status granted when the plans and resource allocation – if fully implemented as planned – of a proposed program that has not yet enrolled students appear to demonstrate the program’s ability to meet the ARC-PA Standards, or when a program holding Accreditation-Provisional status appears to demonstrate continued progress in complying with the Standards as it prepares for the graduation of the first class (cohort) of students.

In the event that the Mount St. Mary's University Physician Assistant Program does not achieve Accreditation-Provisional status as planned, students will not matriculate and will receive a full refund of tuition and deposits. Please note this does not include fees paid by applicants to the Centralized Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA).

PA Program Director Mary Jackson

We aim to go beyond the fundamentals of clinical medicine to deliver healthcare education rooted in compassion. We will prepare our graduates to care deeply about their patients, to provide and promote healthcare equality and to nurture their own personal well-being so that they can maintain joy and thrive.

Mary Jackson, MMS, PA-C CAQ-EM, C’05 Physician Assistant Graduate Program Director

Meet Our Team

Mary Jackson

Mary Jackson, MMS, PA-C, CAQ-EM

Program Director - PA Program

1/7
Leanne Hedges, MMS, PA-C

Leanne Hedges, MMS, PA-C

Associate Program Director, Physician Assistant Program

2/7
Ndidi Nwokorie, MBBS, FAAP

Ndidi Nwokorie, MBBS, FAAP

Medical Director - PA Program

3/7
Tara Jernejcic, MA-ISHB, PA-C

Tara Jernejcic, MA-ISHB, PA-C

Clinical Director - PA Program

4/7
Megan Putman

Megan Putman, MMS, PA-C

Academic Director - PA Program

5/7
Kevin Richardson, MSPAS, PA-C

Kevin Richardson, MSPAS, PA-C

Director of Assessments - PA Program

6/7
Caitlin Eby

Caitlin Eby

Administrative Manager, Physician Assistant Program

7/7

See our full directory.

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Contact the PA Program

Physician Assistant Program
Mount St. Mary's University
16300 Old Emmitsburg Rd.
Emmitsburg, MD 21727
301-447-5260
paprogram@msmary.edu