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| Admissions | Master of Physician Assistant Studies | Mission, Vision and Outcomes


The mission of the Rocky Vista Physician Assistant Program is to prepare clinically competent, collaborative, and compassionate physician assistants to provide primary care.

Goals/Strategic Priorities

RVU Program Goals are to:

1. Equip graduates with knowledge and skills necessary to evaluate and manage primary care presentations at a level of competence that allows for indirect supervision

Measures and Outcomes:

  • Measure 1: Knowledge
    • Consistent improvement on the first-time taker PANCE rate to meet or exceed the national mean by 2025
    • Outcomes:
Cohort RVU First-time Pass Rate National First-time Pass Rate
2020 77% 95%
2021 100% 93%
  • Measure 2: Skills
    • Progression to an entrustable level of competence (level 3) by graduation
    • Outcomes:
Cohort % Achieving Competency Level 3 of greater
2020 100%
2021 100%

2. Prepare graduates to work collaboratively in interprofessional environments 

Measures and Outcomes:

  • Measure 1:
    • Graduates complete an interprofessional course with osteopathic medical students (PAS 5001, PAS 5002)
    • Outcomes:
Cohort % Completing Interprofessional Coursework
2020 100%
2021 100%
  • Measure 2:
    • Graduates indicate they feel prepared to work collaboratively in interprofessional environments as evidenced by exit survey scores above program benchmark (> 3.50)
    • Outcomes:
Cohort Mean Score (exit survey)
2020 4.71
2021 4.83

3. Train graduates to provide compassionate medical care to diverse patient populations and in a variety of clinical settings 

Measures and Outcomes:

  • Measure 1:
    • Graduates complete diversity, equity, and inclusivity training throughout the curriculum (PAS 5131, PAS 5132, PAS 5233)
    • Outcomes:
Cohort % completing DEI training throughout the curriculum
2020 100%
2021 100%
  • Measure 2:
    • Graduates score at or above program benchmarks for compassion across clinical disciplines and settings (competency level 3)
    • Outcomes:
Cohort % scoring Competency Level 3 or greater
2020 100%
2021 100%
  • Measure 3:
    • Graduates indicate they feel adequately prepared to care for patients from varied backgrounds as evidenced by exit survey scores above program benchmark (3.50)
    • Outcomes:
Cohort Mean Score (exit survey)
2020 4.39
2021 4.26

4. Promote life-long learning skills

Measures and Outcomes:

  • Measure 1:
    • Graduates complete evidence-based medicine courses (PAS 5135, PAS 5136)
    • Outcomes:
Cohort % Completing evidence-based medicine courses
2020 100%
2021 100%
  • Measure 2:
    • Graduates complete a capstone research project (PAS 5272)
    • Outcomes:
Cohort % Completing research project
2020 100%
2021 100%
  • Measure 3:
    • Graduates indicate they have the skills required to gather evidence to make effective clinical decisions as evidenced by exit survey scores above program benchmarks (3.50)
    • Outcomes:
Cohort Mean Score (exit survey)
2020 4.35
2021 4.51

5. Promote student success and program completion

Measures and Outcomes:

  • Measure (2):
    • Student attrition rate below the national average (11.7% - PAEA 35th Program Report)
    • Graduation rate > 90%
    • Outcomes:
Cohort Attrition Graduation Rate
2020 6% 94%
2021 2.7% 97%

PA Program Learning Outcomes (PLOs): 

The RVU/PA Program Graduates:

  • Provide quality comprehensive patient care. (Patient Care)
  • Apply medical knowledge in the practice environment. (Medical Knowledge)
  • Incorporate evidence-based clinical reasoning into medical decisions. (Practice-based Learning)
  • Communicate effectively in clinical settings. (Interpersonal Communication Skills)
  • Demonstrate professional behaviors in educational and practice environments. (Professionalism)
  • Navigate evolving healthcare systems to provide optimal patient care. (Systems-based Practice)
  • Work collaboratively within an interprofessional team.  (Interprofessional Collaboration)
  • Employ strategies that promote life-long personal and professional growth. (Personal/Professional Development)


The University reserves the right to change tuition and fees at any time without advanced notice. Learn more about the tuition payment schedule, individual health insurance status, and the tuition refund process.

The Physician Assistant Program processes hundreds of applications for admissions each year. Learn more about requirements for admissions including GRE scores, minimum prerequisite course work, and GPA requirements.

The MPAS curriculum is sequenced and designed to address and integrate the entrustable professional activities in which are contained the competencies the student must achieve to successfully enter the profession upon graduation.


Ciera Black, PAS I
Master of Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS)

Campus Location
Colorado Campus

San Diego, CA

Undergraduate studies:

Graduate studies:
Masters of Biomedical Sciences

What clubs and activities are you currently involved with?
SGA, and Cadaver Lab instructor.

Tell us a bit about yourself.
I am from San Diego and I moved to Colorado about 3 years ago on a whim. I fell in love with the mountains and the people here, and decided to make it home for a while. I love being outdoors and hiking with my husband and our pups. We are constantly on the road to find new rural places to camp, ride dirt bikes, and take photos. I love to teach undergraduate and high school students, so I work as a cadaver lab instructor at a local community college, alongside my PA studies.

What initially brought you to RVU? Why did you decide to pursue this degree?
I chose RVU because of its location and the PA program's emphasis on clinical education. I really wanted to be part of a developing program and RVU was the perfect fit for me. I chose to become a PA because I love the perfect balance it offers as a career. Not only does it balance team-based decision making with autonomy, it also offers a healthy work and home life balance.

What do you enjoy doing when not at RVU (family life, interests, and hobbies)?
I enjoy using my telescope and learning about space. I enjoy home improvement projects, especially ones in the yard. Overall, I am happiest when outdoors, whether I'm camping, hiking, or off-roading.

What is an interesting or little known fact about you:
I used to race dirt-bikes competitively.

What is the best piece of advice you have been given by a professor or student while at RVU?
You are studying for your patients, not for a grade.

What are your medical interests?
Pediatric emergency medicine or rural medicine.

What is a favorite memory you have from being in RVU?
My favorite memories always revolve around our in-person skills days because we get to see each other face to face and actually practice what we've been learning. My first time doing an ultrasound to see the heart and vessels was my favorite memory because you could look around the room and see how proud all of my classmates were when they successfully found the structures.

What advice do you have for prospective students?
PA school is truly the hardest thing you will have ever done in your life thus far. Actively scheduling time to focus on your mental health every single day is vital to making it through this.

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8401 South Chambers Rd.

Parker, CO 80112

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