New master's program approved for MSU Meridian

MERIDIAN, Miss. (WTOK) - The College Board has approved an MSU Meridian proposal to plan a Master of Physician Assistant Studies degree program. It would make MSU the first public institution in the state to offer the new program.

Housed on MSU-Meridian’s Riley Campus in downtown Meridian, the program will prepare clinical practitioners to meet critical needs in rural healthcare.

The vote Thursday gave Mississippi State permission to move forward, hiring a director to create a program plan, which includes necessary steps to achieve initial accreditation.

Head of campus, Terry Dale Cruse, says a search for a program director will start immediately. The planning process is expected to take up to three years.

“We believe this program is a great fit for our Meridian Campus, particularly with the strength of the local medical community,” said MSU
Provost and Executive Vice President Judy Bonner.

Physician assistants serve under the supervision of doctors of medicine or osteopathy, making clinical decisions and providing a broad range of diagnostic, therapeutic, preventative and health maintenance services.

More than 50 colleges and universities across the U.S. are currently pursuing accreditation for PA programs according to the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA).