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Drexel University Introduces Two Accelerated Healthcare Degrees

Physician assistants and physical therapists are two of the jobs in the health-care industry most in demand these days, but the education for either specialty typically requires a seven-year commitment for college students in traditional programs.

Licensure for professional physical therapists requires a degree in physical therapy at the master's level and includes a substantial number of clinical hours in order to achieve it. A physician assistant degree is also a master's program plus, in that it is generally a three year program including hundreds of hours spent on site in a hospital or outpatient clinic.

Drexel University's nursing school has a program that shaves a year off the time needed for an undergraduate degree in either profession. Called the Pathways to Health Professions, it provides for accelerated learning utilizing summer sessions and a co-op program that involves full, a six month period of full, paid employment in the related field of study. Dr. Michael Kennedy, Pathways' program director, said the co-op element�� has helped Pathways compete with accelerated degree programs both locally and nationally.

Along with these new additions to their academic catalogue, the Drexel College of Nursing and Health Professions also offers the Accelerated Career Entry Nursing Program, which facilitates the attainment of a BSN in 11 months for those who have earned a bachelors degree in another field and who wish to change careers.

Drexel also offers online degrees for nurses that want to complete a bachelor's or master's program. Thousands of nurses are pursuing BSN or MSN degrees in order to qualify for management positions in their profession, or to specialize in certain areas such as anesthesia and oncology.

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