WEST LIBERTY, W.Va., June 15, 2020 — West Liberty University’s College of Sciences held a virtual commencement ceremony for graduates in the physician assistant master’s degree program this past Friday that was streamed live on Topper Station (topperstation.com) and remains available on demand.
President Stephen Greiner and Board of Governors secretary Jack Adams give remarks from separate locations and the ceremony included images of all 18 graduates.
“This was an unprecedented spring with so many challenges brought on by the pandemic as it swept across the nation. I am more than proud of our students in the Class of 2020. Their persistence and efforts as they finished their clinical rotations are proof of their academic excellence and devotion to their service as physician assistants,” said Program Director William Childers, EdD, MS, PA-C.
WLU Provost Dr. Brian Crawford conferred the degrees and Physician Assistant in Cardiology Lynette DeChristopher was the commencement guest speaker. Special wishes were offered by a variety of alumni and dignitaries including Congressman David B. McKinley, P.E., (R-W.Va.).
DeChristopher has 15 years of experience as a practicing PA in the specialty of cardiology and is currently with the Mon Health Heart and Vascular Center in Morgantown, W.Va., which is designated a HeartCARE Center of National Distinction of Excellence by the American College of Cardiology. She also serves as an educator in cardiology and a clinical preceptor for PA students from WLU and Alderson Broaddus University and serves as a board member for the newly accredited West Virginia University PA Program.
The PA Class of 2020 and their hometowns include: Noah Bernal, Honolulu; Kristi Dalton, Bangor, Pa.; Joshua Ellis, Hurricane, W.Va.; Erica Fitzsimmons, Wheeling, W.Va.; Alex Franke, Wheeling, W.Va.; Johnny Giles, Fruit Heights, Utah; Kaitlyn Higginbotham, Red House, W.Va.; Dylan Kruger, East Islip, N.Y.; Rachel Lake, Puyallup, Wash.; Jessica Limbacher, Pittsburgh; Jamie Pacilio, Mahwah, N.J.; Emily Puskarich, Wheeling, W.Va.; Ryan Rafa, Wheeling, W.Va.; Sabrina Salupo, Parma Heights, Ohio; Marisa Shook, Maumee, Ohio; Kami Sisson, Hinton, W.Va.; Kaitlyn Smith, Moundsville, W.Va. and Amanda Thoburn, Grafton, W.Va.
Graduates also received Pi Alpha Honors during the ceremony, which is the national honor society for physician assistants and indicates academic achievement, community service and leadership. Ryan Rafa and Rachel Lake will receive these special honors from Professor Kristie Meintel.
WLU’s Master’s in Physician Assistant Studies Master’s Degree program is a 24-month, year-round degree that begins each year in July.
For complete information on the physician assistant program at WLU, please visit westliberty.edu/physician-assistant or call 304-336-5098.