Student Spotlight: Casey Galey

Casey Galey SPHP StudentCasey Allen Galey has served in the U.S. Army for over 18 years, and among other honors and awards is the recipient of a Purple Heart, Meritorious Service Medal, three Bronze Star Medals, four Good Conduct Medals, two Army Commendation Medals, Army Achievement Medal, Humanitarian Assistance Award, and Combat Infantryman’s Badge.

As a former 18D (Special Forces Medical Sergeant), he wishes to attend a Physician Assistant (PA) program and is using UNE Online science prerequisite courses to help him achieve that goal. Here, he talks about his experience with online courses and the benefits of having a flexible course timeline.

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and what encouraged you to take a course with UNE Online?

I work part-time in the Army National Guard and I also deploy overseas as a paramedic for the government. I’m currently taking online courses so I can apply to a Physician’s Assistant program.

Since I travel a great deal, taking in-person classes can be challenging. It’s also a challenge to find post-graduate level science prerequisite lecture and lab courses that are accepted at accredited PA schools.

The UNE Online science lecture and lab courses have satisfied all of the requirements, and have all been accepted at my target schools. It has been extremely convenient to be able to use them as my medical prerequisite courses for PA school.

Can you talk more about your experience and how it’s led you to want to apply to a Physician Assistant program?

I was a medic in the military, and it was my experience in the medical field that led me to explore becoming a PA. I have my undergraduate BSHS in Clinical Health Sciences from George Washington University, which is a degree only offered to specific active-duty military personnel as a way to formalize their specialized military training with a degree.

The BSHS is also designed to prepare you to continue your education within graduate or professional programs such as physician assistant (PA) school. So I continued with medicine because it made the most sense with my undergraduate degree and all my training.

Can you talk a little bit about how the flexibility of the online courses fit into your lifestyle?

I’ve completed my associate’s and my bachelor’s online, and those undergrad courses were fairly easy to find. It has been more challenging to find graduate-level science prerequisite lecture and lab courses that are 100% online, accredited, and accepted everywhere.

So when I found UNE I just never left because UNE has everything I needed.

I’ve had a good experience dealing with UNE. In fact, in taking online science prerequisite courses through CGPS, I learned that UNE has a physician’s assistant program – so I’ve also applied to the UNE PA program.Casey Galey in a tuxedo

Can you talk about the support that you received from your course instructors and your student service advisor?

They’ve been a big help – especially during the microbiology lecture and lab course I recently took. I ended up having to travel during the course, and my lab materials ran into delays during overseas shipping.

I worked with my teacher and my student advisor, and I was able to still be productive within my course, even though I had not received my materials yet. The course took me a little longer than normal because of the overseas shipping delay, but I was still able to get it done.

My student advisor is also pretty attentive and accommodating. Whenever I’ve had an issue they’ve helped me solve it. And they reach out fairly regularly – I’d say probably about five, six times a course, just to check-in, say hi, offer help, and that kind of thing.

One of my instructors also was nice enough to provide one of my letters of recommendation for PA school.

What did you like best about the course curriculum?

The flexibility. Right now I’m a little behind schedule in my class, but I just left my job which has freed me up to be steadily working on making that time up. That’s the nice thing about UNE courses, is that even though you must get it done within 16 weeks, you can get it done just as quickly or slowly as you want within that 16 weeks.

That offers a lot of flexibility that I don’t always need, but I do always appreciate.

If you could give future science prerequisites for the health professions, students a piece of advice, what would that be?

The courses are all pretty well laid out, but I think it goes without saying, everyone needs to practice good time management. Also, make sure you don’t overload yourself.

Even though you can take these courses at your own pace, they are still quite challenging and can take up more time than you might think, so give yourself time.

Learn more about our online science prerequisites courses

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