Students in University of the Cumberlands’ Master’s of Science in Physician Assistant Studies (MSPAS) program recently won first and third place at the Kentucky Academy of Physician Assistants (KAPA) Challenge Bowl. This marks the second year Cumberlands’ teams have won first and third, making UC’s PA program the back-to-back Challenge Bowl champion.

Catherine Gaines, Lindsey Janson, and Carly Threlkeld made up the first-place team, and Sarah Banks, Valerie Deremer, and Zachary Taylor took home third.

Cumberlands competed against teams from the University of Kentucky, Sullivan University, and other regional universities. 

“The entire faculty is very proud of the students in gaining this accomplishment for the second year in a row,” said Dana Campbell, Director of the PA program. “Their hard work and dedication to academics shines through in moments like these.  It makes me happy for the students, the program and the future communities and patients they will eventually go on to serve.”

Catherine Gaines called the KAPA bowl experience “great.” It gave her a glimpse of what life will be like to be a practicing PA, which created “a spark of excitement” for her.

“It was a great feeling knowing that what we are learning can be applied outside the classroom,” Gaines said. “Carly and Lindsey were wonderful teammates; we have different strengths, which made us a great team!”

Carly Threlkeld added, “It is very rewarding to have competed and win the 2019 KAPA Challenge Bowl. It gave us a great boost of confidence seeing how well we performed against teams from other PA programs in the state.”

The PA program plans on competing in the KAPA Bowl again next year. Meanwhile, the students are hunkering down on their studies as they prepare for clinical rotations,  which begin this May.