Physician Assistant Olympics Amazing Race

By Alex McKennon | May 16, 2024
Arcadia PA students at the Amazing Race.

This spring semester on April 13, students from Arcadia’s Physician Assistant (PA) Program raced through the streets of Center City, Philadelphia with other students from programs throughout the Delaware Valley region to conclude the 2024 PA Olympics. The event, aptly named the Amazing Race after the popular reality TV show, pitted teams of PA students against each other in a friendly competition and as a celebration of the thousands of dollars raised over several months for this year’s PA Olympics.

The annual PA Olympics has become a renowned cross-cultural event for PA students, faculty, alumni, and guests of the Delaware Valley PA Programs. Begun in 2003 by Michael Huber, MMS, PA-C, DFAAPA, the PA Olympics unites the leadership and service engagement talents of PA faculty and students from local programs to raise money for a designated local charity. Over its 22 years, the event has grown from including just three programs in 2003 to 11 programs across 13 university campuses today. PA Olympics was recognized at the 2016 Physician Assistant Education Association Education Forum when Michael Huber accepted the Partnership Award, given to a program that has made a noteworthy contribution to PA education, on behalf of the participating PA Programs and their fundraising and collaboration efforts under his leadership in developing the PA Olympics.

Students with their fundraising grand total.

This year, the 11 participating programs raised a record-breaking $26,300 for For Pete’s Sake Cancer Respite Foundation (the previous record of $25,500 was set in 2018). For Pete’s Sake partners with oncology professionals at over 100 sites to provide transformative respite experiences for cancer patients (ages 21-55), their caregivers, and their children and offer families emotional support that supports them through their journeys with cancer. 

For Pete’s Sake’s mission hit close to home for this year’s participants. Adam Moore, who was a faculty member at Thomas Jefferson University’s PA Program and who was heavily involved with PA Olympics, passed away from colon cancer in the fall. He and his family received a For Pete’s Sake Staycation in 2020 after he was diagnosed. This year’s fundraising efforts were dedicated to Adam in honor of his legacy and commitment to the PA Olympics. 

All of the PA student participants in the Amazing Race.

PA Olympics’ impact showed brightly on April 13 at the day’s Opening Ceremony, where Adam Moore’s family, the CEO of For Pete’s Sake, dozens of faculty members, and a record number of race teams gathered in Thomas Jefferson University’s Alumni Hall. The 2024 PA Olympics trophy was presented to Temple University, which raised the most money per student of all the programs, while Arcadia University took home 2nd place. Arcadia University also held its own in the afternoon’s Amazing Race, with one of the Arcadia teams placing 3rd behind only Drexel and Thomas Jefferson Center City. 

To date, PA Olympics has donated over a quarter of a million dollars to local charities and has left an indelible mark on the lives of countless individuals within the community.