2018 PAEA Education Forum: Board Candidate

Carl Garrubba, MPA, PA-C, CPA

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Treasurer Platform Statement

I humbly express my continued interest in the position of Treasurer for my second term on the Board of Directors of the Physician Assistant Education Association (PAEA). I currently have three years of experience as Treasurer of the Board and as a member of the Audit Committee. During my tenure on the Board and serving on the Audit and Finance Steering Committees, I have gained significant experience in the functioning and activities of the Association, and strive to further serve in advancing its mission and vision. I currently serve as the Associate Director of the Dominican University PA Program and have been involved in PA education for over 11 years. Additionally, I have been a practicing PA for the last 23 years and continue to do so in HIV clinical research.

The Treasurer, along with the Finance Council, is responsible for generative and strategic thought, oversight, and the safeguarding of the assets of the PAEA. This includes supporting the Association in carrying out its strategic goals of faculty development, leadership and research, and diversity and inclusion that must be woven throughout the Association.

I believe in, and fully support the mission of the PAEA of leadership, innovation, and excellence in PA education and its vision of health for all. Although much of the work of the Treasurer and the Finance Steering Committee is fiduciary, there is newly inspired growth of generative and strategic effort that will help to inform the Board on financial matters. I am fully committed to perform all activities as assigned in the role of Treasurer of the PAEA and I believe that my background as a Certified Public Accountant as well as my previous and current experience as Treasurer with the PAEA has made me an excellent candidate for this position.

Thank you for your time and consideration of my candidacy. If elected, I will do my very best to assist in leading PAEA into the future.


1. What attributes characterize a high-performing Board member and which of these attributes do you possess?

I believe there are many attributes that characterize a high-performing board member. One of the most important is the ability to look beyond what is current, and discuss the future of the Association and profession by being generative and strategic in thought and discussion. In addition, to this “big picture” view, it is also important for board members to be nimble enough to also understand and appreciate the detail that will help them ideate the future. Other important attributes is the ability to listen and contribute effectively while maintaining the utmost professionalism. It is essential for board members to have excellent oral and written communication skills in and out of the board room. Lastly, it is crucial for a board member to have the passion and desire to lead an organization while dedicating the appropriate time necessary for success.


2. How do you think the competency-based medical education movement will affect PA education in the next 5-10 years and what should PAEA do to help programs incorporate CBME?

Competency-based education is one of the most important movements in all areas and levels of education. The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) has incorporated core competencies that are assessed during medical training and throughout a physician’s career which have served their students well. As PA educators, we must embrace this change and incorporate it into our curricula and our student evaluation methods. Competencies include explicit, measurable, and transferable learning objectives that empower students to be successful. In the next 5-10 years, I hope to see measurable changes to the accreditation standards to support this paradigm shift and I see the PAEA supporting its member programs by developing core competencies for our profession and helping programs adopt and incorporate these in a meaningful way.


3. "If you have seen one program, you have seen one program," is a phrase often heard in PA education circles. Will this emphasis on program uniqueness continue to serve the profession moving forward? Why or why not?

Program uniqueness is an important concept in that each program approaches education in a slightly different way (traditional, problem-based, online), and may focus on different populations to serve depending on location or need. This demonstrates differences more in the way a program delivers education, but not necessarily the eligibility requirements or the outcomes that must be achieved prior to graduation for the student to be successful and competent in their profession. I believe that some standardizing of requirements for entry into the PA education and the outcomes that are assessed would serve the profession well. Ultimately, the PA profession serves its patients who are at the center of healthcare and we are obligated to deliver high-quality, competent, and professional graduates to serve our diverse and expanding population.


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