FROSTBURG, Md. — Dr. Beth Smolko, director of the Frostburg State University physician assistant program, has been elected as the president-elect of the American Academy of Physician Assistants.
Founded in 1968, the academy is the national professional society of physician assistants in the United States.
“As the national leader of a major medical organization, I am honored to be representing the interests of over 130,000 PAs across the country,” Smolko said in a news release.
FSU received accreditation-provisional status for its new physician assistant program in March. The program, a master’s degree in physician assistant studies, is offered through the University System of Maryland at Hagerstown.
The first classes for the initial group of 25 students began in May.
“I am confident that my role as president will be of great benefit to the Frostburg physician assistant program,” Smolko said in the news release. “Every time I speak at a conference or am interviewed for radio, TV, print or social media will provide an opportunity to promote the university.”
Physician assistants practice in every medical setting and diagnose illness, develop and manage treatment plans, prescribe medications and increasingly serve as a patient’s principal health care provider, according to the release.