Building a Foundation in Atlanta
Last weekend and into early this week, I had the opportunity to travel to Atlanta for the AAPA annual PA Conference with my classmates and a few of my professors. Aside from getting the chance to bond with my peers and connect with my mentors on a personal level outside of the classroom, I was able to attend several seminars and conference events all while taking in the city of Atlanta.
While at the conference, I not only attended several seminars on topics that are of great interest to me, but also was able to meet and pick the brains of PAs, ranging from those who are still in their first year of practice to those who have been practicing for some 30 years. In my travels and by speaking to so many PAs from all over the country, I gained valuable knowledge of what to expect on rotations and even after graduation as a new PA. I also found insight in that, despite my expectations that many of the seminars would be way over my head as a student, I was blown away at how easily I was able to follow them and build on the foundation of knowledge I have already established on each subject while in PA school.
My experiences at the conference and getting to interact with other students and PAs not only gave me hope that there is a light at the end of this long tunnel, but also instilled again how much I have learned over the last year, how much I still have to experience, and how much I have to look forward to.
Overall, I was supremely impressed with the conference, enjoyed having the opportunity to learn outside the classroom, was thankful for everyone I had the chance to meet, and am grateful that I was able to attend while I am still a student. After this weekend, I know that as a future PA, I will hopefully be attending the conference each year and will always be able to look back on my experiences when I attended as a student.