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50 years of excellence

The program has ranked in the top 10 physician assistant programs by U.S. News & World Report since 2004.

The Utah Physician Assistant Program (UPAP) is honored this year to be celebrating 50 years as a program and as a profession. If you have come through our program – whether that was in the World War II barracks building or in our Research Park classrooms—you’ll want to return to campus and celebrate with us during the Alumni and Medical Community Weekend. It promises to be a once-in-a-lifetime event to honor all that the Physician Assistant Program has accomplished.

We are so proud of our heritage, from our first graduates of the medical extender program (MEDEX) to the current day. Since our founding in 1971, our program has gone on to become one of the best PA programs in the country, ranking in the top 10 PA programs by U.S. News & World Report since rankings began in 2004.

Our programs are excellent because of our people. UPAP faculty and students have been at the forefront of many important medical achievements. The hundreds of hours of volunteer work done by faculty and staff over the decades has helped Utah become a better place for everyone. Through our work, we have had the opportunity to build greater health outcomes across the state, including important work with migrant, refugee, and First People communities.

Our program has come a long way from our original model of “medical extender” training. Now, alumni from our programs—including our satellite campus in St. George—are found in clinics worldwide, providing the benefit of their knowledge and training. As we celebrate our past, I am confident that we have even more to look forward to in the future.

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the University of Utah’s Physician Assistant Program as part of the Alumni and Medical Community Weekend, click here.