Pre-Health Professional Areas of Study

Critical Thinking in Play

  • Jim Kielek ’09 on the job as a physician assistant.
    Jim Kielek ’09 on the job as a physician assistant.
February 17, 2016
Initially studying in the premedical program at Washington College, Jim Kielek ’09 decided by his junior year to focus instead on becoming a physician assistant.

He was familiar with the field because his father is a PA, and he knew it would require less time in school and more time for family. “It’s a much shorter path than medical school and I like the flexibility of the lifestyle for family and work,” Kielek stated.

After graduating from WAC he was accepted to the PA post-graduate program at Towson University and Community College Baltimore Essex County. After 26 months, he graduated with his master’s degree of physician assistant studies and took his current position at MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center in Baltimore, where he did some of his rotations as a PA student. Most importantly in the track I took, critical thinking skills best prepared me for what I do now,” Kielek said. “Working as a PA in the ICU, we’re also on the rapid response team … you need to think quickly on the spot.”

Beyond the classroom at WAC, Kielek spent four years on the lacrosse team and was a student athlete mentor and a member of Phi Beta Kappa. In the classroom, he remembers well his time with Dr. Aaron Krochmal, Associate Professor of Biology, preparing for his future career. “I think science has a lot of problem solving, especially in Dr. Krochmal’s classes. The physiology classes and his exams were very challenging, with a lot of critical thinking problems.”


Last modified on Mar. 15th, 2016 at 10:42am by Meghan Livie.