Harrogate, Tennessee, July 31, 2018 – The Class of 2018 of the Physician Assistant (PA) Program at Lincoln Memorial University-DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine (LMU-DCOM) will celebrate its commencement on Saturday, August 4, at 10 a.m. in the Tex Turner Arena on the LMU main campus in Harrogate, Tennessee. Joan Ward, MS, PA-C, chair of the department of Physician Assistant Studies at University of the Sciences, Philadelphia, will deliver the commencement address.
Ward has over 19 years of clinical experience in gastroenterology, emergency medicine and internal medicine. She has been a physician assistant educator for more than 12 years and has also served as the clinical coordinator for Philadelphia University. She has held a variety of roles for the Physician Assistant Education Association including clinical coordinator facilitator, new program director facilitator and writer for the emergency medicine and surgery end of rotation exams. Her interest in medicine developed from being a volunteer emergency medical technician. She obtained her certificate of Physician Assistant Studies from Philadelphia College of Textiles and Sciences and completed her master’s degree in Physician Assistant Studies at Philadelphia University.
The physician assistant (PA) profession is one of the fastest growing health professions in the country and has been repeatedly named by Forbes magazine as the best master’s degree for jobs in the United States. A physician assistant is educated in the medical model. PAs are nationally certified to work side by side with both osteopathic and allopathic physicians in every medical specialty. PAs are licensed to diagnose illness, prescribe medications and assist in surgery. They conduct physical exams, order and interpret medical tests and provide counseling on preventive health care. A PA has at least six years of education: a four-year undergraduate degree and the master’s-level physician assistant degree. PA students complete more than 2,400 hours of clinical rotations prior to graduation.
The DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine is located on the campus of Lincoln Memorial University in Harrogate, Tennessee. LMU-DCOM is an integral part of LMU’s values-based learning community, and is dedicated to preparing the next generation of osteopathic physicians to provide health care in the often underserved region of Appalachia and beyond. For more information about LMU-DCOM, call 1-800.325.0900, ext. 7082, e-mail dcom@LMUnet.edu, or visit us online at http://med.LMUnet.edu.