United States Public Health Service Extern Opportunities


The Commissioned Corps

The Commissioned Corps of the U.S. Public Health Service (www.usphs.gov) is an elite team of well-trained, highly qualified public health professionals dedicated to protecting, promoting, and advancing the health and safety of the Nation. Driven by a passion for public service, these men and women serve on the leading edge of the Nation’s fight against disease and poor health conditions.

Student Opportunities Offered by USPHS Commissioned Corps

The U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS) Commissioned Corps offers an excellent service opportunity for PA students during their last year of training via the Senior Commissioned Officer Student Training and Extern Program (SRCOSTEP). Besides representing an excellent training opportunity, SRCOSTEP also assists to decrease a PA student's financial burden; participants are eligible to receive pay allowances. The program is highly competitive but less well-known than many other opportunities.

For More Information

For more information about the Commissioned Officer Student Extern Program,

including eligibility criteria and how to apply, visit:

United States Public Health Service SRCOSTEP.

When completing my final preceptorship at Hahnemann University's PA Program, I was lucky enough to have been selected as one of only a few COSTEP participants. I still consider that experience to be the best of all my clerkships, with great training opportunities and amazing mentors - one of whom I still look upon as the best mentor I've had in my career as a PA.

Following my COSTEP experience, I went on to serve in the National Health Service Corps (NHSC) for five years, devote my entire career to serving the underserved, and remain a NHSC Ambassador to this day!

Dr. Scott Richards,
Founding Chair/Director, Dept. of Physician Assistant Studies, E&H School of Health Sciences (SHS


Emory, Va. Campus: P.O. Box 947, Emory, Va. 24327 (map)    276.944.4121
Marion, Va. Campus: 565 Radio Hill Rd., Marion, Va. 24354 (map)    276.944.6342 ·  276.781.7200