About the Program

The Physician Assistant (PA) program at Wichita State University is the only one of its kind in Kansas. It prepares students to practice medicine with the supervision of a licensed physician.

One of the key advantages of attending Wichita State is our location in Kansas' major medical and metropolitan center.

  • We offer one of the largest university-based programs for health professionals west of the Mississippi.
  • Our location provides a wide base for training in one of the area's many medical facilities.
  • Students get the chance to learn from top professionals in the state.
  • Of the more than 1,400 program graduates, 56% work in rural communities; 47% in primary care; 39% in medically underserved areas.

A successful student will demonstrate critical thinking abilities, sound judgment, exemplify medical ethics and utilize interpersonal skills. An attitude of respect for self and others, adherence to the concepts of privilege and confidentiality, and a commitment to patient welfare are essential attributes for students to demonstrate.

ARC-PA Accreditation

At its March 2018 meeting, the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA) placed the Wichita State University Physician Assistant program sponsored by Wichita State University on Accreditation-Probation status until its next review in March 2020.

Probation is a temporary status of accreditation conferred when a program does not meet the Standards and when the capability of the program to provide an acceptable educational experience for its students is threatened.

Once placed on probation, programs that still fail to comply with accreditation requirements in a timely manner, as specified by the ARC-PA, may be scheduled for a focused site visit and/or risk having their accreditation withdrawn.

Specific questions regarding the Program and its plans should be directed to the Program Director and/or the appropriate institutional official(s).

Message from the Program Director:

The Wichita State University PA program remains a fully accredited program that continues to produce excellent outcomes. Our program has recently completed a rigorous self-study followed by a routine site visit from our accrediting body, ARC-PA. During this process, ARC-PA determined we were unable to demonstrate full compliance with standards related to two primary areas: how the program uses data collection and analysis to guide program modifications; and verification of clinical experience, establishment of levels of expectation, and assessment of skills for the clinical year. As a result, our accreditation status changed from “Accreditation – Continued” to Accreditation – Probation”.

Our department, as well as the College of Health Professions and University administration have accepted that decision and have immediately initiated an intensive plan of action to address the issues cited. We are fully confident that these corrective measures will meet or exceed the accreditation standards established by ARC-PA with no adverse consequences to currently enrolled, admitted, or prospective students. Students can continue to apply, matriculate, graduate, take the PANCE, and apply for state licensure.

PANCE eligibility requirements are explained by NCCPA. ARC-PA has additional information about attending a program with Accreditation – Probation status.

The leadership of WSU and the College of Health Professions, along with the faculty and staff of the PA program and I take this decision by ARC-PA very seriously. It is our responsibility to correct any deficiencies identified through the self-study process and we will successfully address those concerns. Full compliance with all ARC-PA Accreditation Standards represents only the minimum of my expectations for this program. We have faculty and staff dedicated to excellence in PA education, we have tremendous facilities, and most importantly, we have amazing students that will be part of a very bright future for healthcare in Kansas and beyond.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions about our program (kim.darden@wichita.edu).

Learn more about our Program Outcomes.


Vision

Excellence in physician assistant education

Mission

Transform students into highly competent physician assistants

Guiding Principles

  • Foster an enthusiastic learning environment committed to student success
  • Promote patient-centered collaborative care
  • Model and cultivate compassion
  • Respond to the need for primary care providers in Kansas
  • Encourage health care for rural and underserved populations
  • Emphasize evidence-based practice and promote lifelong learning