Physician Assistant Program (Starts 1/8/18)
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Christian Brothers University is not accepting applications for its current PA Program. If you would like information on the current PA Program, please click here.

Information found on this webpage reflects a new PA Program Christian Brothers University is developing and proposing to the accrediting body. The program defined below is not yet accredited. We will start to accept applications conditionally for the new PA Program starting June 1, 2017 through CASPA.


Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies (MSPAS) Program Overview


Christian Brothers University is a four-year, private university affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church. The University was founded in 1871 by the De La Salle Christian Brothers, a Catholic teaching order. Its mission and institutional goals are founded on the heritage of Lasallian education. CBU is located on a 75-acre wooded campus in midtown Memphis, Tennessee—about four miles east of downtown and close to major medical centers. The Physician Assistant Program is a graduate program in the CBU School of Sciences.

The Physician Assistant (PA) Profession

The PA profession is a relatively new profession, having its start at Duke University. Duke graduated the first three PAs in 1967. Since that time, the profession has seen tremendous growth. In 2016, there were 218 PA programs in the U.S., graduating slightly over 10,000 PAs. PAs are trained in the same modal as medical students to become part of a health-care team. Their training provides them with the knowledge and experience to examine patients, diagnose injuries and illnesses, and provide treatment as a general practitioner. After graduation, they must pass a national certification exam and apply for state medical licensure to work with a supervising physician or surgeon.

Why become a PA?

In 2014, Forbes recognized a Master's in PA education as the #1 best master’s degree. In 2015, Forbes and Glassdoor listed a job as a PA as the best job in America based on opportunities and salary. In 2016, U.S. News & World Report listed a job as a PA as the 5th best job and now lists it as the 3rd best job in 2017. There are other wonderful reasons to become a PA! There is a great work-life balance and a high level of job satisfaction. Also, PAs are the only medical care provider who can change their area of practice from one medical specialty to another without additional formal training or certification. So, if you are looking for a career in medicine, want to help others, and are looking for good work-life balance and flexibility in your job, then the PA profession may be for you.

Overview of our PA program at CBU

The PA program at Christian Brothers University is committed to the training of PAs to better serve the community, region, state, and national healthcare needs. The program is comprised of course work completed over 15 months, followed by 14 months of clinical rotations. Its curriculum is based on active-learning, student engagement,  and an integrative approach. The program has partnered with nationally renowned medical facilities to offer exceptional clinical experiences that occur during both didactic and clinical phases of the program with a focus in orthopedic medicine. The population surrounding the university and the student body has great diversity and the faculty are committed to the success and the well-being of our PA students. In keeping with the university, the program embraces educating minds, touching hearts, and remembering the presence of God.

CBU PA Program Mission

To educate diverse and exemplary individuals to prepare them to become caring, competent, ethical and professional physician assistants who will positively affect their patients, community, and the health care system.

CBU PA Program Vision

Christian Brothers University PA Program graduates are prepared to assume leadership roles, practice clinically in a wide variety of primary care and specialty settings,  and to engage in life-long learning. The program emphasizes evidence-based primary care and preventive medicine, the provision of health care to the medically underserved,  and utilization of information technology to achieve these goals. The Program promotes interdisciplinary team care, patient advocacy, and the delivery of primary health care for all patients.

CBU PA Program Goals
  1. Recruit and matriculate qualified applicants from a variety of backgrounds and experiences.
  2. Prepare students to address community health issues and health disparities in the context of societal and economic systems.
  3. Attain and maintain an accredited program that ensures graduates will have the requisite knowledge and skills for entry in to PA practice.
  4. Prepare PA students for team-based care through inter-professional education.
  5. Graduate competent physician assistants that function as professional members of the healthcare team in a variety of clinical settings to meet workforce needs.
  6. Foster a culture of professional involvement, leadership, and advocacy.

Being a new program, we currently have no information to share with you on how well we are doing at meeting our program goals. As soon as that information becomes available, we will pass that information on to you.

CBU is for you if you…

…are looking for faculty with decades of combined clinical and teaching experiences;
…want to train at clinical facilities that have been ranked in the top fifty medical centers in the United States;
…are looking to serve those who are less fortunate or lack access to medical care;
…are looking for a program with an active, integrated learning curriculum
…are interested in orthopedics;
…want to study in an environment that embraces Christian traditional values;
…respect each individual as a unique person; and
…are seeking an excellent education to prepare for one of the top growing professions.


PA Resources and Links

NCCPA • AAPA •  PAEA • TAPA • ARC-PA CASPA • Pi Alpha