I was raised in a small tight-knit community in rural Alaska. I was fortunate to be surrounded by several strong female role models. It just so happened that they worked in some aspect of the healthcare field. Originally I intended to become a kindergarten teacher, but things often turn out quite different than we think they should. I graduated from the University of Alaska Fairbanks in 2003 with a BS in psychology. I immediately launched into PA training the next month. In 2005, I graduated in MEDEX Seattle class 37 and began working in family practice in rural Alaska. I knew I wanted to help others but I truly fell in love with my calling that first year. Unfortunately, I was not unaware of the scope and impact of sexual assault in rural Alaska. In the spring of 2006 I became trained as a Sexual Assault Forensic examiner. I was an active member of our local Sexual Assault Response Team in addition to a full time PA job for several years. Most recently, I’ve been welcomed back to the MEDEX family as faculty in the Anchorage site.
I have often been asked what I like being a PA. There are so many wonderful things about what I do that it is hard to narrow it down to just one or two things. My experience as a family practice PA continuously reminds me of the wonder surrounding the miracle of life; working with patients from prenatal care on through geriatrics; respecting the privilege of being a small part in helping families through the difficulties of growing pains, hardship and the miracle of love in all its forms. I am looking forward to shaping the future of our profession to continue to give back to our communities.