Breitman-Dorn Research Fellows Share Advice for PA Researchers

Celebrating 20 Years of PA Research

July 31, 2019

Anniversary CoverThe PA Foundation’s Breitman-Dorn Research Fellowship was established through a generous donation from Jerald A. Breitman in memory of his partner Stephen Dorn. The endowment encourages a commitment to research on the PA profession and provides financial assistance to doctoral candidates who are contributing to research on the influence of PAs on medical care. Since its inception, the PA Foundation has awarded the fellowship to 16 individuals. In celebration of the fellowship’s 20th anniversary, the Foundation reached out to former recipients to learn about their career paths since receiving the award. Find out what advice they have for others who are considering pursuing a doctorate and research related to the PA profession.

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“Don’t start the Ph.D. process before you consider all the obstacles and rewards that may come from it. Is it the intellectual environment you seek or is it the title after your name? Finally, learn in depth the theories that support your field of endeavor and try to advance that field of knowledge.”

  • Roderick Hooker, 1999 recipient

“The journey of professional advancement coupled with intellectual curiosity is an exciting one! The rigor of a doctoral program should provide all PAs with the stamina and preparation to contribute to the profession in important ways. Whether it is research related to education, workforce, or policy, the findings help to advance the entire profession.”

  • Lisa Alexander, 2001 recipient

“Find a mentor who has navigated the doctoral process. It is a journey and it is critical to have the wisdom and experience from someone who has gone before you …The experience opens doors for collaboration and you never know where that may lead!”

  • Rosann Ippolito, 2006 recipient

“[Always remember that] when you are done, this is something no one can take away from you; it is your work!”

  • Carol Biscardi, 2009 recipient

“Consider carefully how this will impact your career and your goals…The degree is nice, but the lessons learned [are] career changing.”

  • James Carlson, 2010 recipient

“Don’t give up! Making time to work on your dissertation needs to be a priority if you are going to successfully complete it. Schedule blocks of time on your calendar each week to work on the dissertation and do this until you have all your committee signatures on your final version!”

  • Karen Graham, 2012 recipient

If you are a doctoral candidate conducting research on the role or contributions of PAs in healthcare, consider applying today for the 2019 Breitman-Dorn Research Fellowship. Find out more about the application requirements, and apply by the August 16 deadline.

More Resources
Celebrating 20 Years: Breitman-Dorn Research Fellowship Anniversary Report
Help the PA Foundation Empower PAs
PA Foundation Fellow Focuses Research on PAs in the United Kingdom