Cheri Hendrix has become the new director of the Anne Arundel Community College/University of Maryland Baltimore Collaborative Physician Assistant (PA) program. Hendrix, a 2003 graduate of the program herself, was most recently academic director for the Adventist University of Health Sciences Physician Assistant program in Florida.
“It's not every day one gets to lead their own alma mater; I am very excited to be back,” she said. “It's surreal.” Hendrix said one of her immediate focuses will be improving students’ critical thinking skills.
“The critical thought process is fundamental to a solid education,” she said. “My focus is on improving students to be better PAs through adjunctive learning activities, like simulation experiences that are key to demonstrating a student's breadth of knowledge. When designed and performed with faculty oversight, students do grow; it's amazing to watch their confidence soar.”
After graduating, Hendrix completed a postgraduate physician assistant residency in general surgery at Duke University Medical Center. She practiced at numerous institutions including the Duke University Medical Center, North Orlando Surgical Group and Florida Hospital Fish Memorial, Baltimore Washington Medical Center and Florida Hospital Orlando.
In her new role, she will be responsible for the overall coordination, management and leadership of PA education at AACC/UMB. Hendrix’s valuable, long-standing relationship as an alumna and former faculty member with AACC will serve to build and enhance health-related partnerships with internal and external stakeholders in education, research and patient care.
The program is a unique partnership between AACC and the UMB Graduate School, in which students complete a Master of Science in Health Science from UMB and a Certificate of Physician Assistant Studies from AACC.