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Frequently Asked Questions

1. How long is the program?
The program is 32 months in length.
2. Is the program accredited?
Yes. The program is accredited by the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant, Inc. (ARC-PA).
3. When does the academic year start?
The academic year starts at the end of August each year (considered the Fall semester).
4. Does the curriculum sequence include summers?
Yes. The curriculum sequence includes a full 15-week summer semester.
5. Are there breaks between semesters?
There is a winter break between the fall and spring semester, a spring break either during or at the completion of the spring semester, and a break at the end of the summer semester before the fall semester begins. All breaks are approximately 1 week.
6. Given that the program is a dual degree program (BS/MS), if I already have a Bachelor's degree, do I need to attend all 32 months of the program?
Regardless of what degrees they have earned in the past, all students must complete the same coursework throughout the 32 months of the program. No student can be exempted from any of the coursework.
7. What are the schedules during the didactic and clinical phases?
The hours during the first 16 months (didactic phase) are usually Monday through Thursday, 4pm-9pm, and Sundays, 9am-5pm. There are usually no Friday classes. There are no Saturday classes. The hours during the 12-month clinical phase vary with the demands of the specific rotation. Students follow a typical workday or hospital shift. During the 4-month culminating semester, the hours follow a traditional format.
8. Where are your rotation sites?
We have many rotation sites throughout the five boroughs with some additional sites in Long Island, Westchester and New Jersey. Our sites include (but are not limited to) Metropolitan Hospital, Columbia Presbyterian/Cornell Medical Center, Beth Israel Medical Center, Maimonides Hospital, Lutheran Medical Center, North Shore Manhasset, Montefiore Medical Center, Lenox Hills Hospital, as well as a number of private practices and clinics.
9. Do you help graduates find jobs?
Although we do not have an actual job placement service, we often get information about jobs from employers and then forward that information to our graduates.
10. How do I apply to the PA Program?
The Manhattan Campus Physician Assistant Program participates in the Central Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA). Applicants apply online by visiting https://portal.caspaonline.org. Applicants must also download and complete the PA Program Supplemental Application form, which should be mailed to:

Office of Admissions - PA Manhattan
Touro College School of Health Sciences
1700 Union Boulevard
Bay Shore, New York 11706

A Supplemental Application fee of $25 is also required and may be paid via a link found on the Supplemental Application form.

11. What is the deadline for submitting an application?
The application deadline for those wishing to start the program Fall 2014 has passed. For students applying for Fall 2015, the regular deadline for submitting completed applications (i.e. with all accompanying documents) is January 15, 2015. We also have an Early Decision deadline of November 1, 2014 for those candidates who would like to be considered earlier in the admissions process.
12. Do I have to have all my prerequisites completed before I can apply?
No. You may apply to the program while you still have some prerequisites in progress, but all prerequisite coursework needs to be completed a full semester before entering the program. Pending coursework may, however, delay review of your application. At the time of enrollment in the PA Program, students must have a minimum of 90 credits completed including all the required prerequisite courses.
13. Is the Manhattan program the same as the Bay Shore program?
The Manhattan program is not the same as the Bay Shore program. Although both programs lead to joint BS/MS degrees, the curricula are not identical. Additionally, the Manhattan program is a 32-month, non-traditional program in terms of the scheduling of classes. The Bay Shore program is a 24-month, traditionally-scheduled program.
14. How do I go about fulfilling the PA "shadowing" requirement?
The best way to fulfill the shadowing requirement is to find a hospital or other clinical setting that employs PAs and has a volunteer program, and sign up as a volunteer. While working as a volunteer, it is often possible to shadow a PA in the facility. Many private offices that employ PAs will also allow a student to shadow a PA for the required hours.
15. What constitutes direct patient contact health care experience?

Direct patient contact hours must involve interaction with patients and can be obtained in a number of ways. It may include either paid or volunteer positions. Some examples include, but are not limited to:

  • volunteer in an Emergency Department transporting patients, delivering meals and blankets to patients, etc.
  • Volunteer in a doctor’s office performing height and weight, vital signs, etc.
  • medical assistant or nurse’s aide
  • phlebotomist
  • Licensed Practical Nurse or Respiratory Therapist
  • EMT or Paramedic
16. Do you have advisors who can go over my transcript with me?
Yes. Please contact the Office of Admissions at 866 TOURO-4-U.
17. How competitive is admission to the program?
Admission to the program is extremely competitive; each entering class numbers approximately 50 students selected from approximately 1000 applicants. As such, the indicated admission standards are minimums, and the program typically admits students who exceed those minimums.
18. Do you recommend that the majority of direct patient care health care experience hours be completed before I submit my application?
Yes. The Personal Statement that is required with the application should be informed and enriched by your health care experiences.
19. Is there a minimum GPA required for admission?
Yes. The minimum science GPA and overall GPA are both 3.0.
20. What was the average GPA of your latest accepted class?
The average cumulative GPA of the Class of 2016 was 3.51; the average science GPA was 3.46.
21. What type of financial aid is available to help fund my education?
Students enrolled in the PA Program are eligible to apply for federal loan assistance, which is available in various forms. Specific information regarding federal loans can be obtained by contacting the Office of Financial Aid. Please be aware that the first two semesters of the program are considered undergraduate, and students can apply for undergraduate financial aid. The subsequent semesters of the program are considered graduate, which opens up a different avenue of financial aid opportunities.