Mission, Values, and Goals
Gardner-Webb University, a private, Christian, Baptist-related university, provides outstanding undergraduate and graduate education that is strongly grounded in the liberal arts while offering opportunities to prepare for various professions. Fostering meaningful intellectual thought, critical analysis, and spiritual challenge within a diverse community of learning, Gardner-Webb is dedicated to higher education that integrates scholarship with Christian life. By embracing faith and intellectual freedom, balancing conviction with compassion, and inspiring a love of learning, service, and leadership, Gardner-Webb prepares its graduates to make significant contributions for God and humanity in an ever-changing global community.
Physician Assistant Mission
Develop knowledgeable and caring Physician Assistants who practice competent patient-centered primary care in diverse environments.
Physician Assistant Goals
Knowledge – Cultivate high quality graduates committed to self-discovery and self-assessment and committed to the application of critical thinking and analysis of research.
We strive to achieve Physician Assistant National Certifying Exam (PANCE) pass rates compatible with the national average and ideally will achieve and maintain a 100% pass rate. Our first class graduated in May 2016 and had a 91% first-time and 100% overall pass rate on the PANCE.
We develop student clinical reasoning skills through intensive team and problem based learning discussions and activities to provide competent patient centered care and demonstrate self-directed and lifelong learning. The curriculum follows an organ based systems approach with students participating in skills sessions, cases studies, and literature searches for problem solving. Clinical rotations provide a wide range of primary care clinical experiences.
Faith – Foster a commitment to Christian values, ethics, and integrity in personal and professional service as a physician assistant.
In keeping with our faith based program, we encourage students to provide compassionate and ethical care that is reflected in their attitude and approach to patient scenarios and interactions. We cultivate a collaborative learning environment for students with one another via team based activities and with faculty having an open door policy and dedicated time for student mentoring.
Service – Emphasize a servant-leadership lifestyle, which prepares graduates to serve in underserved communities, domestically and abroad.
Students are encouraged to serve in primary care for diverse populations and for the underserved. All of our students are required to complete a clinical rotation in a medically underserved area or for a medically underserved population. Our students volunteer and conduct health screenings for the homeless at a local church. We are developing international mission opportunities for rotations and we foster a relationship with local organizations that can provide opportunities for personal mission trips.
Leadership – Develop a solid professional value system, committed to life-long learning, professional development, and advocacy for the profession.
Professionalism is emphasized as a component of academics. Students elect their government representatives who participate in faculty meetings and have membership opportunities in national and state PA organizations. Our faculty members regularly participate in Physician Assistant Education Association (PAEA) conferences and workshops to remain well-informed to educate and encourage our students to play an active role in addressing the issues facing our profession. The PA program is housed in the Gardner-Webb University College of Health Sciences building that is shared with the Nursing and Athletic Training Preventative and Rehabilitative Health Science departments providing additional opportunities to reinforce interprofessionalism.