The DeSales University Physician Assistant program has a graduation rate exceeding both the regional and national averages.

Medical Studies is an intensive, “honors” type program that completes the undergraduate requirements in three years and leads directly without further application to the two year Physician Assistant Program.  This is designed for high-achieving students who are confident of their career choice and enjoy the challenge of rigorous scientific studies.  The curriculum has at least 18 credit hours per semester and is closely monitored by their advisor, a PA Program faculty member, so that the student receives all the required courses.

The deadline to complete your application file for the Medical Studies major is December 15.
All interviews must be completed by January 15.



Students are encouraged to apply early in their senior year.  The student must first be accepted by the University and identify themselves as interested in the Medical Studies major.  If minimum GPA and SAT/ACT requirements are met, an interview is then scheduled with the PA Program.  The deadline for application to the Medical Studies major is December 15 and all interviews must be completed by January 15.  The PA Program faculty individually select all candidates for this major and, once in the program, a seat in the graduate PA Program is reserved for the student.  Candidates are selected based on their academic record, their motivation for health care, and their potential for future growth.  DeSales University welcomes applications from all qualified students regardless of race, religion, sex, national or ethnic origin. 

There is no single, preferred high school course of study or specific classes required, but a college preparatory curriculum is highly recommended. 

To continue in the Medical Studies major, the student must maintain at least a 3.0 GPA in the required sciences and overall each semester.  To matriculate in their senior year to the PA Program, the student must have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 overall and in the required sciences and have completed at least 250 healthcare hours.  If the GPA requirement is not met in any semester, the student is placed on probation.  The second time this is not met the student loses his/her guaranteed seat in the PA Program and must change into another major.  If the student still wishes to pursue the PA degree at DeSales University, transition into the BA in Biology major is recommended and application to the Master’s PA Program in their senior year through CASPA is necessary. 

Learn more about the Graduate Program

DeSales Physician Assistant Program News

Capacity Crowd On Hand For Neubauer Executive Forum

by William Edwards '17 | Feb 25, 2015

 Hundreds packed the Gambet Center’s Barbara Walker Breslin Auditorium February 17 for the Division of Business’ second annual Executive Forum, headlined by B.Braun Medical, Inc. Chairman and CEO Caroll Neubauer.

During the Forum, Neubauer and Assistant Professor in the Division of Business and former CEO himself Dr. Steven Aukers, conversed about the challenges of heading a company, from ethics in the business world to sustainability and leading by example. The B.Braun executive also stressed to students the value of a strong work ethic, citing examples of miscellaneous jobs he had done like hanging drapes while in college to support himself.

“There are so many jobs I’ve done, but I’ve never been without one,” Neubauer said.

After the discussion segment, Neubauer fielded several questions from audience members—which included students, faculty, local physicians, and B.Braun employees—about the state of the medical business, the direction of the company, medical device excise taxation, and counsel for current undergraduates.

“As a senior, I definitely value his input on leadership and his advice on how to succeed and advance in your career,” said finance and marketing dual major John Bayeux, who interned at B.Braun in 2014. “He told the audience that a great leader is someone who will not ask anyone to do something that they wouldn't do.”

The Forum, open to students from the Division of Business, as well as select physician assistant and nursing majors because B. Braun is a healthcare company, aims to provide a nuanced learning approach.

“I think these types of experiences with a guy like Caroll are amazing,” Aukers said. “This is the type of stuff we talk about in class, things that are really critical to learning a completely different way."

The university’s invitation to Neubauer for the event stemmed from B.Braun Medical, Inc.’s partnership with DeSales, as the company made significant donations to furnish equipment for the nursing and physician assistant classrooms and labs in the newly built Gambet Center. B.Braun now uses the Center to train employees.

Neubauer, however, expressed his enjoyment of interacting with young people and saw the Executive Forum as an opportunity to mentor students.

“I hope that students took away that executives are just like everybody else. They’re afraid, they’re nervous, they’re strong, they’re hard workers,” Neubauer said. “We’re just normal people who like to share their experiences as much, and hopefully can give a good lesson along the way.”

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The DeSales Free Clinic at the Allentown Rescue Mission

The DeSales Free Clinic at the Allentown Rescue Mission opened in January 2007 in an effort to bring healthcare to the homeless. The clinic is staffed by DeSales students and faculty and has treated more than 900 patients since it opened. No patient is ever turned away or charged for services, and the operation is run entirely on donations. 

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