Rachel Solomon, PA-S Rachel Solomon, PA-S

“What does my soul need right now?”

“What does my body need right now?”

“What’s bringing me joy today?”

These are the types of questions I’ve learned to actively ask myself while studying every night and trying to make it through one exam and onto the next. Physician assistant education is challenging and time-intensive. The constant grind will affect your sleep schedule, diet, exercise, relationships, and general routine. However, PA school doesn’t have to negatively impact these areas of your life. If you’re applying to PA school (or even if you’re already in the thick of it!), I encourage you to consider how you will best care for yourself.

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Mariah Leroux, PA-S Mariah Leroux, PA-S

It finally happened one January afternoon. Four long, difficult and often disappointing years of applying and reapplying to  physician assistant programs finally ended when I received my first acceptance letter from Duke University. It’s difficult to describe the flood of emotions I felt in that moment, but a mixture of pure joy and gratitude prevailed. The years of frustration and rejections had resulted in a better outcome than I ever could have imagined, and I couldn’t stop the tears as I reflected on everything it took to get here.

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Kate Hauler, PA-S Kate Hauler, PA-S

The idea of practicing medicine has long enthralled me because I love science, people, and a good challenge – where else do these meld more perfectly? But there was always one thing in my way, not external but rather internal: my squeamishness.

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Olivia Brownley, PA-S Olivia Brownley, PA-S

It was finally here: my first day of clinical rotations! I never thought I could be so afraid and so excited about something all at once. Didactic year felt like it had gone by in a flash and our Bridge course zipped on by. What they say about PA school being like drinking from a firehouse is very true. I couldn’t possibly have kept all that information in my brain! What was I going to do? My mind was racing with thoughts. I was thrilled that my first rotation was primary care because I would have eight weeks to get exposure to just about everything. This was also the scary part — I was going to be working on just about everything. 

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Moe Paquette Moe Paquette

Last January I was in the middle of my didactic year, writing my first Duke Physician Assistant Program blog about my roots in Vermont and experiencing Cameron Indoor Stadium and Duke Basketball with my dad. Fast forward 18 months, and I have now finished my clinical year, received my certificate in the beautiful Duke Chapel, and will soon be taking the PANCE.

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