A Tradition of Service
Randy Randolph arrived at Pacific’s School of Physician Assistant Studies (PA) in August 1997 as the clinical coordinator for a brand new program. He is now leaving in July as the director of a program considered both innovative and dynamic and very highly regarded nationally.
“I was drawn to Pacific University because it was an opportunity to transition from a practicing clinician to an educator in a new PA program that also happened to be in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, “ he said, “I was impressed by the University leadership and the enthusiastic support for the new program by its advisors and faculty.”
In coming to Pacific, Randolph said he viewed it as a career change that was, “an opportunity to continue to learn about medicine and academia while giving back to my profession by helping to educate future physician assistants.” Randolph was a clinically practicing physician assistant for 20 years prior to joining the faculty, working in primary care and a surgical practice in San Diego.
In addition to his task as clinical coordinator, a position he held until 2003, Randolph was appointed associate director of the PA program in 1998, then became interim director in 2004. He was appointed program director in 2005.
Among his achievements is the pioneering of a didactic phase, modified-block curriculum that has been incorporated by other physician assistant programs around the country. Early data suggests the curriculum improves national board exam scores for graduates.
Other accomplishments for Randolph include students’ commitments to practicing in areas of the world where medical services often are in short supply. More than two-thirds of the University’s PA students will participate in international rotations during the upcoming academic year, including opportunities in Central America, China and Kenya.
With retirement, Randolph said, “I will most miss my interactions with students and watching them grow personally and professionally through their course. I will miss graduation day as they celebrate their success with the family and friends and the messages they send accounting their triumphs in clinical practice.”
In addition, Randolph said he would miss the camaraderie of his fellow faculty and staff and their inspirational commitment for student success.
As for memorable moments, Randolph was quick to mention the University’s announcement of the new program director—Judy Ortiz. Randolph noted Ortiz, currently the associate program director, “has the vision and leadership skills to insure that the program, near and dear to my heart, will continue on its path to remain one of the most innovative and dynamic programs in the country while remaining true to our mission and graduating well-trained, compassionate and highly skill clinicians.”
-- Wanda Laukkanen