School of Health Sciences Graduates 61 Students

Posted by Jeffrey Cowart
On Saturday, Aug. 17 in the Lincoln Theatre in Marion, Va., 61 SHS students graduated with a Masters of Physician Assistant Studies or a Doctorate of Physical Therapy.

Sixty-one students graduated from the SHS on Saturday, Aug. 17 in the Lincoln Theatre in Marion, Va., which included the inaugural class of 29 Master of Physician Assistant Studies students and 2019 class of 32 Doctorate of Physical Therapy students. Graduates were from Southwest Virginia as well as states including Louisiana, Pennsylvania, Florida, New York, Illinois, Indiana,Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Minnesota, Missouri, Arizona, Wisconsin and New Jersey.

The inaugural class of Masters of Physician Assistant Studies studentsThe inaugural class of Masters of Physician Assistant Studies students“Celebrating the graduation of an inaugural cohort of students is always a very special occasion. This is equally true for our inaugural class of MPAS students. It’s a dream come true for everyone – the students, faculty and staff, and the College,” said Louise Fincher, Vice President for the School of Health Sciences. “I have no doubt that the students in this inaugural PA class will make a significant and lasting impact on the lives of their patients and the overall quality of healthcare in this region and beyond.”

The keynote speaker for the commencement was Professor Emeritus Ruth Ballweg MPA, PA-C, DFAAPA. She is the recipient of the two highest awards in the PA profession, AAPA’s Eugene Stead Award in 2012 and PAEA’s first Lifetime Achievement Award in 2015. Ballweg has been a leader in all phases of the PA profession including a three-year presidential term with the Physician Assistant Education Association (PAEA), representing the American Academic of PAs (AAPA) as a federal Primary Care Health Policy Fellow, and serving as a Commissioner for the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA). 

Professor Ballweg is the director of international affairs for the NCCPA and historian for the PA History Society. Her international work includes guidance and support to the PA career in Canada, the United Kingdom, The Netherlands, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, Ghana, Laos and India.

Class of 2019 Doctorate of Physical Therapy studentsClass of 2019 Doctorate of Physical Therapy studentsThe School of Health Sciences at Emory & Henry College was launched in 2014 with the goal of preparing compassionate, patient-centered, highly-skilled health care professionals who not only provide quality healthcare to their patients but also actively engage in leadership and service opportunities within their professional organizations and communities. The SHS includes two undergraduate programs housed primarily on the main campus and four graduate programs at the School of Health Sciences campus in Marion.

“I am very proud of all of the PT and PA students that make up this summer class of 2019. They successfully met the challenges of their extremely rigorous coursework and have now excelled in their clinical rotations,” said Fincher. “We continue to hear wonderful things from our preceptors on the quality of the E&H PA and PT students…their level of knowledge and patient care skills and their level of professionalism. I am also very proud of our students’ level of commitment and engagement in serving their community. These students are a shining example of the E&H mission in action.” 

  • Keynote speaker Professor Emeritus Ruth Ballweg MPA, PA-C, DFAAPA
    Keynote speaker Professor Emeritus Ruth Ballweg MPA, PA-C, DFAAPA
We continue to hear wonderful things from our preceptors on the quality of the E&H PA and PT students…their level of knowledge and patient care skills and their level of professionalism.
-Lou Fincher, Vice President of the School of Health Sciences

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