Murfin takes the helm of Elon's Physician Assistant Studies Program
The Department of Physician Assistant Studies welcomes Melissa Murfin as its new department chair and program director as of Sept. 1.
Melissa Murfin has moved into the role of department chair and program director for the Department of Physician Assistant Studies at Elon University. Murfin took the new post on Sept. 1.
The change follows the department's successful completion of the provisional accreditation process with the awarding of "Accreditation – Continued" by the Accreditation Review Commission for the Education of the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA) in fall 2016.
Murfin, a graduate of the University of Florida with doctor of pharmacy and master of physician assistant studies degrees, has been a member of Elon's Department of Physician Assistant Studies since 2012. Prior to that she worked clinically as both a physician assistant and pharmacist, as well as being a faculty member at the LECOM School of Pharmacy in Bradenton, Florida.
Since coming to Elon, Murfin has demonstrated her ability to be a stellar teacher and scholar and has had multiple publications and national presentations. While she has a wide variety of research interests, she is perhaps best known for bringing gaming and technology to the classroom and she is eager to embrace any teaching strategy that will actively engage the students.
Murfin has proven to be an adept administrator in the program’s academic coordinator role and as chair of the Academic and Professional Progress and Academic Curriculum Committees. Her service to the AAPA Commission on Continuing Professional Development and Education enables her to be at the forefront of changes in the profession.
Patti Ragan served department chair since 2013 and is stepping back to a full-time faculty role. She said she can’t think of a better candidate to take the Elon PA Program to the next level. “We are so fortunate to have Melissa stepping up to lead the program," Ragan said. "Having worked closely with her the past five years, I am confident she has the talents and skills that will make her very successful in her new role. I look forward to seeing her implement her future vision for the program.”
The 27-month Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies program includes 12 months of systems-based, academic coursework and 15 months of clinical practicum. The program began in 2013 and has graduated three classes of physician assistants under Ragan's instrumental leadership. Elon PA graduates have an impressive 97 percent first time pass rate and 100 percent overall pass rate on the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination.