Mercer University undergraduate students who plan to pursue a career as a physician assistant are considered to be on the "pre-physician assistant" or "pre-PA" track. Pre-PA is not an academic major; students on the pre-PA track must declare and work towards an academic major and minor>> as they fulfill the admission requirements for their preferred PA graduate program(s) - at least as a back-up plan.
Pre-physician assistant students may choose one of three paths as they prepare themselves for graduate school:
- Students may earn a bachelor’s degree as they fulfill the prerequisites for the PA program of their choice;
- Students may participate in one of the Accelerated Special Consideration Programs (ASCP) described in detail on the Special Consideration Programs web page>>; or
- Students may fulfill only the minimum requirements for the PA school of their choice before matriculation into that graduate program (while most P.A. programs require a bachelor's degree before matriculation, some do not).
Mercer pre-PA students will enroll in the MercerPreHealth Canvas course to start developing their professional school application portfolios, and participate in the workshops and seminars hosted by the professional advisors in the Office of Academic & Advising Services and the Center for Career & Professional Development. The schedule of those events is available on the Mercer Science and Pre-Health Google Calendar>>.
Students who do not have access to the Canvas course may read through the 2017-18 Pre-PA Track Fundamentals>> handbook.
Note that thescience coursework required for the pre-PA track is only offered by the College of Liberal Arts on the Macon campus. Also note that competency in mathematics at or above the calculus level is required to begin the chemistry and biology course sequences at Mercer University. Students planning on following the pre-PA track are therefore advised to take mathematics in high school at least through the pre-calculus level.