Student Spotlight

Emilie Mathura, OMS I

Class of 2023

  • Hometown: Raleigh, North Carolina
  • Undergraduate Studies: Bachelor of Science degree in Human Biology
  • Clubs and Activities: Student Government Association, OB/GYN Club, American Medical Women's Association, and Medical Students for Choice.

Why did you choose RVUCOM? The Urban Underserved Track and the sabbatical program which will allow me to complete my Master of Public Health...
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Faculty Spotlight

Cathy Ruff, MS, PA-C

Program Director and Chair of Physician Assistant Studies
Associate Professor of Physician Assistant Studies

  • Hometown: Dearborn, Michigan
  • Undergraduate Studies: Bachelor of Science degree in Cellular Biology
  • Graduate Studies: Master of Science degree in Cellular/Molecular Biology. Physician Assistant Training at the University of Colorado Health Science Center.

What class/classes do you teach? I teach professionalism topics, Physical Exam, and small group skills. Why did you choose...
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Profile

Cathy Ruff, MS, PA-C

Program Director and Chair of Physician Assistant Studies
Associate Professor of Physician Assistant Studies

What class/classes do you teach?
I teach professionalism topics, Physical Exam, and small group skills.

Why did you choose to teach at RVUCOM?
I was excited to be a part of building something from the ground up. It offered me great challenge and opportunities for professional growth.

What do you like most about teaching at RVUCOM?
I like RVU’s small size and “hometown” feel. I spent most of my childhood in rural southwestern Colorado and appreciate a smaller community.

Why did you decide to pursue a career in medicine?
After graduate school I found out quickly that I did not enjoy working with rats or mice in a lab! After I had an opportunity to combine my cell biology background with clinical trials, I realized how much I loved applying my basic science background to clinical medicine. I learned about the PA profession and went for it. I would not do anything differently.

What projects and/or research are you currently working on or plan to work on in the future?
In addition to our in-house projects, I’ve been invited to collaborate on a qualitative study looking at why I – and others – are early adopters of Competency-based Medical Education (CBME).

What is your favorite memory of your own time in PA school?
I have great memories of PA school! It really was like a fire hydrant of information blasting at us, but I made the best friends! We had lots of silly fun and made a point of having regular social activities to maintain our focus (and sanity!). Three of us still get together regularly, and we keep in touch with many of our classmates.

Outside of RVU, do you participate in any other organization? Which ones and why?
I have been actively involved with the Physician Assistant Education Association (PAEA) for many years. Most recently I served as Chair of the Conference Committee. Although no longer chair, I present regularly at the annual conference, and serve as a reviewer for the Journal of PA Education. PAEA is the only national organization for PA educators and offers a great opportunity to collaborate and share with other PA faculty across the country.