Arrest or Conviction Disclosure Policy

If an applicant or student has entered a plea bargain, been arrested, indicted, or convicted for violating any state or federal law including DUI (excluding minor traffic violations) before enrollment as a student in the Department of Physician Assistant Studies, that applicant or student must notify the program director immediately. Due to the impact of such an event on the PA Program efforts to credential students at clinics/hospitals and the implications for future state medical licensing, this information must be disclosed immediately.

If a student enters a plea bargain, is arrested, indicted, or convicted for violating any state or federal law, including DUI (excluding minor traffic violations) after matriculation as a Gardner-Webb University Physician Assistant Studies student, disclosure and provision of documentation to the PA Studies Program is required. Failure to disclose a plea bargain, arrest, indictment, or conviction of a violation of any state or federal law including DUI (excluding minor traffic violations) that occurs while a PA student could be grounds for dismissal from the Department of Physician Assistant Studies and will be reviewed by the Progress and Advancement Committee on a case-by-case basis.

Background Check & Drug/Alcohol Screen Policy

Drug/Alcohol Screen Policy

Applicants and students should refer to the Alcohol and Drug Policies located in the Code of Conduct within the Gayle Bolt Price School of Graduate Studies Student Handbook for further details on denial of enrollment or dismissal from the program.

Before matriculation, students offered a seat in the program must complete a criminal background check and drug screen via CastleBranch services. To fulfill the annual requirements of SCPE sites, students are required to repeat the criminal background check and drug screening via CastleBranch as designated by the Clinical Team. (Standard A3.19)

The department reserves the right to conduct unannounced drug screening at its discretion (see Controlled Substance Examination Regulation Act or CSERA). Each of the following warrants a professionalism violation and APC referral for possible dismissal from the program:

  1. Student delay or decline to participate in requested alcohol and/or drug screen at any point after matriculation (considered equivalent to failing a drug/alcohol).
  2. Positive drug screen without medical review officer approval.
  3. Attending any university or program function, class, or clinical site while inebriated.
  4. Representing Gardner-Webb University and/or the PA Program in an official capacity while intoxicated.

Background Check Policy

Applicants are advised that the results of criminal background checks and other required background screening will be released to third parties involved in their clinical education.

Applicants accepted into the GWU Department of PA Studies who answered “no” to questions relating to the criminal background in their CASPA application and are found to have a subsequent positive criminal background check may be dismissed from the program based on misrepresentation.

In the event of a reported incident, a determination about the applicant’s/student’s continued progress in the academic program will be made by Gardner-Webb University, according to the GWU Department of PA Studies Policy.

Applicants who have been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor may be denied certification or licensure as a health professional. Eligibility information may be obtained from appropriate credentialing boards. Furthermore, supervised clinical practice experience sites may not permit participation in the clinical experience. This should be considered seriously by the candidate before application and matriculation.

Any criminal offense incurred after the student matriculates (misdemeanor or felony) must be reported to the program director within five (5) business days and may result in the student’s dismissal from the program; if this occurs, tuition and fees will not be refunded.

Felony conviction as a student within the Gardner-Webb Department of Physician Assistant Studies will result in immediate dismissal from the GWU PA Studies Program.

All expenses incurred while meeting the requirements for mandatory drug screening, student health
requirements, and background documentation are the sole responsibility of the PA student