March 25, 2024

UCalgary launches Master of Physician Assistant Studies program

Inaugural Alberta program seeks first 20 learners as admissions portal now open

Calgary, AB – The University of Calgary is now accepting applications from students applying to its Master of Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS) program, a first of its kind in Alberta. The two-year course-based graduate degree program is accepting applications in anticipation of a late August course start. The deadline to apply is Apr. 14.

“Congratulations to the Cumming School of Medicine (CSM) on the launch of the Master of Physician Assistant program. Alberta is proud to support this new program through foundational funding of 40 seats in Budget 2023. With the admissions portal now open for the first contingent of students to begin in late August, we look forward to a new generation of physician assistants supporting Albertans’ health across the system, from emergency departments and operating rooms to primary care clinics.”

Rajan Sawhney, Alberta’s Minister of Advanced Education

“The University of Calgary works collaboratively with the Government of Alberta to bring about transformative change in medical education, clinical practice and health outcomes. In working towards these goals, we are grateful for the province’s support of our essential role in improving health care for all Albertans. The launch of the Master of Physician Assistant Studies program is an important next step in providing the highest quality frontline practitioners to sustain our people and our communities.”

Ed McCauley, president and vice-chancellor, University of Calgary

Physician assistants are highly skilled health-care professionals who work under the supervision of licensed medical practitioners in settings including hospitals, health care clinics and physician offices. MPAS graduates will be eligible for the national Physician Assistant certification exam and qualify for registration with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta. 

“The CSM is reimaging health for all, and the introduction of a Physician Assistant program is a prime example of how we achieve that goal. We aim to provide the best experience in Canada for our learners and be a transdisciplinary academic leader. I’d like to thank the Government of Alberta for its support in bringing this from vision to reality and we look forward to welcoming these talented new learners to our campus in August.”

Todd Anderson, dean, Cumming School of Medicine

The university is projecting enrollment for the program of 20 students per year.

UCalgary has been developing the program since receiving an Alberta Advanced Education grant from the provincial government in 2023 through the Targeted Enrolment Expansion Grant program, a program designed to ease the shortage of primary health-care providers in the Alberta. MPAS objectives include attracting applicants from Alberta, particularly students from rural and remote communities, Indigenous communities and equity deserving groups.   

Media inquiries

Kyle Marr
Sr. Communications Specialist

About the University of Calgary
UCalgary is Canada’s entrepreneurial university, located in Canada’s most enterprising city. It is a top research university and one of the highest-ranked universities of its age. Founded in 1966, its 35,000 students experience an innovative learning environment, made rich by research, hands-on experiences and entrepreneurial thinking. It is Canada’s leader in the creation of start-ups. Start something today at the University of Calgary.

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