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RHOP

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Physician Assistant

Options

The Rural Health Opportunities Program (RHOP) currently has options in clinical laboratory science (medical technology), dental hygiene, dentistry, medial technology, medicine, nursing, pharmacy, physical therapy, physician assistant, and radiography. The information contained on this page pertains only to physician assistant. For information on the other options, make a new selection from the Health Professions options page, call 888-293-2293, or email hpoffice@csc.edu.

Who Can Apply

To be eligible for RHOP, the applicant MUST:

  1. Be a rural Nebraska resident (Omaha and Lincoln areas are excluded).
  2. Be a Nebraska high school graduate.
  3. Apply to only the Chadron State College OR Wayne State College RHOP program.
  4. Be committed to practice in a rural Nebraska area.
  5. Be enrolled at CSC for the entirety of their discipline guidelines.
  6. If a nontraditional student: must be willing to begin their work at CSC as a freshman, regardless of previous education.

December 1 Deadline

Applications must be completed on-line, printed & together with three letters of recommendation, a copy of ACT scores, and transcripts submitted via mail to the Chadron State College Health Professions Office. It is the applicant's responsibility to verify a complete application prior to the December 1 deadline. Click here for an application.

Program Characteristics

Four years of study at Chadron State College resulting in a Bachelor of Science Degree in Human Biology is followed by twenty eight months of study in the basic medical sciences and clinical settings at UNMC. The final fifteen months of study at UNMC is spent gaining clinical experience at UNMC in Omaha or various sites in western Nebraska. A Master of Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS) degree is awarded by the University of Nebraska Medical Center upon successful completion of the professional curriculum at UNMC.
The application of college credit earned through previous college work, CLEP or high school courses for college credit under Advanced Placement curriculum, will be determined on an individual basis.

Selection Guidelines

Numerous factors are a part of the selection process. For the Rural Health Opportunities Program, special consideration will be given to applicants who:

  • Want to become physician assistants.
  • Demonstrate academic potential.
  • Are from rural areas of Nebraska.
  • Are committed to returning to rural areas of Nebraska to practice. 

Interviews

Interviews will be approximately 20-30 minutes in length, informal and conducted by faculty and administrators from UNMC and CSC. The interviewers are interested in learning as much about the interviewee as possible, and in answering any questions he/she may have regarding Chadron State College, the University of Nebraska Medical Center, or the Rural Health Opportunities Program. The interviews will be held on the CSC campus. Each person being interviewed will receive a letter stating the specific time and location for the interview.

Final Selection

RHOP Positions: Up to three applicants will be selected to fill the positions in the program for the next class.

Alternate Positions: Up to three applicants will be selected as alternates. Only alternates will be allowed to fill any vacancies that may develop in this class. Those students receiving alternate status who enroll at Chadron State College will maintain this status as long as they meet the standards set forth in the RHOP guidelines and follow the prescribed curriculum.

All applicants will be notified of their status as soon as possible.

Career Promotional Activities

Exposure to the world of medicine and rural health care is an important objective of the physician assistant studies at Chadron State College. The following are some activities in which each student will participate:

  • Attend credit and non-credit UNMC conducted video conferences and classes.
  • Visit the University of Nebraska Medical Center for tours, and seminars and workshops.
  • Visit, work or volunteer to help with patient care in hospitals, clinics, or nursing homes.
  • Develop a professional association with one or more practicing physician assistants.
  • Participate in on-campus activities for health professions students.
  • Attend the PA Professional Conference during the fourth year of study at CSC, if at all possible.

Progress Evaluation

Course Work

  • Follow the specific curriculum designed for this program.
  • Complete courses in a timely manner in order to enter the professional program as scheduled.
  • Send a copy of their grade report at the end of each semester/session to the UNMC Physician Assistant Program.
  • Complete the Graduate Record Exam (GRE).

Program Standards

  • The student’s overall Grade Point Average (GPA) must be at or above a 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.
  • The student must achieve a grade of "B" or higher for all science and mathematics course required in the program of study.
  • Should a student’s performance fall below either of the program standards he/she will be placed on academic probation. The student must meet with their academic advisor to determine a recovery program. Probation must be cleared by the School Dean in conjunction with the UNMC program director prior to the last semester at CSC. Any student not clearing probation in a proper and timely manner will be dismissed from the RHOP program. Only one probation period is allowed.

Journal

Each student is required to keep a journal of his or her professional activities and experiences at CSC. The journals will be turned in to the CSC Health Professions Office at the end of each semester.

Benefits of the Program

If selected as a participant in the program, each student will:

  • Receive early admission to the Physician Assistant Program at the University of Nebraska Medical Center School of Allied Health Professions when he/she begins the pre-physician assistant curriculum at Chadron State College.
  • Follow the specific curriculum at CSC which leads to a Bachelor of Science Degree in Human Biology from CSC and will prepare the student for the twenty eight months at UNMC.
  • Have the opportunity to fulfill the majority of clinical education requirements (15 months) in rural Nebraska
  • Have the opportunity to participate in special professional activities while at CSC.
  • Enjoy a satisfying career as a practicing physician assistant.

For course work requirements while at CSC please see the degree programs page.

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