What made you choose ECU?
When I came to visit, I was so impressed by how down to earth everyone was and how enthusiastic the instructors were. It was a very friendly environment, especially compared to some of the other schools I visited. The others were very sterile and scripted and didn’t really fit my personality. ECU was a good fit for me.
You are involved in the American Academy of Physician Assistants. Tell us about that.
In May, I traveled with two other PA students from ECU to Canada for the National PA Conference to represent the university. There, I ran for the student Board of Directors and after an extensive interview and election process, was voted to serve on the 2012-2013 board.
As the practicality of midlevel practitioners has been on the rise, the numbers of PA programs across the nation are growing to meet the demand. One of the ways the AAPA (American Academy of Physician Assistants) bridges the gap between the students and the AAPA is by the student Board of Directors. This board contains approximately 10 students elected from all over the country who serve as the governing body for all PA students in the country. This board helps make administrative decisions for the student academy of PA students, helps PA schools improve their PA student society, and encourages them to participate in local and national events.
When did you know you wanted to become a PA?
When I was in high school, I decided I wanted to be a PA. So, I worked throughout undergrad to get my clinical hours, volunteer, and research experience to make me a well-rounded PA student. After I graduate and become a PA, I am excited about practicing medicine in remote areas where the need is great.
What is something about ECU you wish everyone could experience?
I wish everyone at ECU could find a way to get involved with a service organization they are passionate about to experience the magnitude of joy behind giving back, personal growth, learning something new, and teaching others.
What is your favorite ECU memory?
Probably one of the most rewarding times occurred after completing my first semester as a PA student. My class is small; there are 32 of us. We know each other very well and are in class together all day, every day. When we all walked out of our last exam, knowing that everyone had passed and done very well, it was this feeling of overwhelming relief and pride. Surviving our first semester together was a good bonding moment.
Is there anything else you think people should know about you?
I have donated my hair to Locks of Love five times. When I was changing schools in the fifth grade, I decided I wanted my hair short. Since then, I grow my hair out and every two to three years, I donate it. I have a family friend who went through chemo twice, so I have seen someone who was in need. I love participating in Locks for Love and knowing that I am changing someone’s life in a very personal way.