Mercyhurst Magazine Summer 2015

Headlines from the Hurst

Physician assistant graduate program welcomes Class of 2017

TWO NEW MASTER’S DEGREES OFFERED Mercyhurst welcomed a full cohort of 20 graduate students to its new Master of Science program in Physician Assistant (PA) Studies this summer. Physician assistants, also known as PAs, practice medicine on a team under the supervision of physicians and surgeons. They are educated to examine patients, diagnose injuries and illnesses, and provide treatment. It’s a hot feld: Physician assistants topped the Forbes Magazine list of “Ten Most Promising Jobs for 2015,” and the U.S. Bureau of Labor ICONIC CHAPEL GETS UPDATES Christ the King Chapel reopened in March. It had been closed for more than two months to allow completion of some needed restoration, including new paint, refnishing of the original wooden pews, and an improved lighting system specifcally designed to highlight the massive mural that surrounds the altar. The project cost about $410,000, all funded by donations, including a 50th anniversary gift from the Class of 1964.

Statistics projects a 38 percent growth in physician assistant jobs through 2022. The 24-month, 97-credit program is open to students with bachelor’s degrees in a variety of felds and could also be an option for health- care professionals seeking to change jobs within the industry. Also beginning this fall is an interdisciplinary graduate program in data science, the frst of its kind in the United States. Housed in The Tom Ridge School of Intelligence Studies and Information Science, the Mercyhurst program combines data science and intelligence while also incorporating curriculum from public health and business.

As public and private organizations attempt to address the challenges posed by the data revolution, they will need to hire skilled practitioners educated as data scientists. A McKinsey Global Institute report stated, “The United States alone could face a shortage of 140,000 to 190,000 people with deep analytical skills as well as 1.5 million managers and analysts with the know-how to use the analysis of big data to make efective decisions.” At the undergraduate level, Mercyhurst will also introduce new majors this fall in bioinformatics, environmental studies and physics, as well as an associate degree program in interior design.


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