How to become a stronger applicant over your holiday break

This time of year is great for so many reasons.

Time off from school.

Time to spend with family and friends.

Time to reflect and be thankful for all that you have.

But most importantly, time to invest in yourself and spend some time working towards obtaining your dream.

That dream, getting into PA school.

So instead of binge watching Stranger Things, Narcos, or Black Mirror on Nextflix (all of which I am guilty of) let’s focus some time and energy on getting into PA school.


The first step: Assess where you are on your journey. Are you years away from applying or is it just around the corner. The closer you are to apply  the more emphasis you need to place. Sit and write down all of the positive elements you have which make you a strong applicant for PA school. Is your GPA solid? Have you volunteered enough? Have you shadowed a PA? ( if not check out

Once you have assessed you situation. Write down a list of 20 ways you can improve yourself. They can be trivial items like read more blog posts on tips to get into PA programs or substantial such as getting in contact with 5 PAs and ask them for tips on how they became a PA and ask them to let you shadow for a morning or afternoon.

Once you have your list get to action. The brainstorming and list creating was the easy part. Taking action is the difficult part.

If you spent only 30 minutes each day on your holiday break with focus on completing the items on your list I bet that you will be surprised on have much you can complete. Most will take the time for granted and procrastinate but for the few that actually take the action towards your goals you will be astonished on how much you accomplished.

An aspiring PA I know spent their time contacting local PA and asking them simple questions about what it was like when they applied to PA programs. Through the email chains he built a rapport with one of the PAs who then became his mentor. Through the mentorship that aspiring PA gained insight into the profession many of his peers would never obtain.

Moral of the story, you never know what can come out of networking. A small and simple interaction lead to a personal mentorship which helped that person get into PA school.

So as the semester draws to close enjoy the holiday season with family and friends, but remember for those who are truly serious about becoming PAs this time is valuable and the steps you taken, no matter how small they may seem can lead to big rewards in the future.


Best of luck.

Remember each day you are one step closer to being a PA.


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