Lexie Lantz Driving Toward Physician’s Assistant Career
As LVC seniors prepared to don their caps and gowns, Lexie Lantz, a neuroscience major with a psychology minor, was smiling and looking past graduation and toward May 22, the date on which she would embark on a new educational journey.
“It feels great,” Lantz said. “I found out about my acceptance a year ago in April.”
Last spring, Lantz learned she was one of 30 people who were accepted into the Physician Assistant Program at the Penn State College of Medicine in Hershey. LVC is one of a just a few colleges that participate in an early assurance program for this graduate track.
Each year higher learning institutions are allowed to select two students to apply and interview for this two-year program. Students who complete it spend two years taking specific course-work and spending a lot of time doing hands-on clinical work. However, it takes a lot of work to apply and be accepted into this program, which leads to a masters in physician assistant studies.
“It was very intense,” Lantz said. “I had four half-hour interviews with actual physician assistants and even a patient of the program director. It was really neat to have a patient to talk to and interview with.”
Before she even made it to the admittance interview, Lantz spent a long time going through the arduous process. First, she had to fill out an application. Then, LVC picked two students from among the interested candidates to forward to Penn State for consideration. Next, Lantz took the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) and submitted an application to Penn State. Finally, she then had to wait to hear the good news that the program extended her an offer, during which Lantz also had to complete four essay questions.
“It was difficult,” said Lantz, who was also a long-time starter on the women’s basketball team. “I was taking some really difficult classes. Plus, I had to take my GRE after an away game and my interview was the day before I had a lab practical. It was like everything piled on at once. But I survived. I had a lot of good friends and my teammates were great.”
Like many students, Lantz is involved in more than just academics at The Valley. As a student-athlete on a team that made it to the MAC Commonwealth playoffs, she had a lot on her plate while applying, but with strong time-management skills and the support of her friends and teammates, she felt up to the challenge. She was happy when she heard that the program accepted her.
“I’m excited to learn more about what I’m interested in professionally,” Lantz said. “I’m excited to learn about the human body and medicine.”
So when LVC celebrated its 2017 graduates in May, Lantz happily continued her journey and move toward her dream job as a physician’s assistant.