Awards and Recognition

Class of 2021 PA student awarded the Dr. Geraldine Burton Branch Scholarship

RinconJoseph Rincon won Dr. Geraldine Burton Branch Scholarship in the amount of $500. The Dr. Geraldine Burton Branch Scholarship is named for Dr. Geraldine Burton Branch, MD, MPH, a pioneering physician who was born in 1908 and earned her medical degree from New York Medical College in 1936 and then went on to earn a Master’s degree in Public Health from UCLA in 1962. This award is presented to students who exemplify the potential as a committed medical professional to build, shape and improve the overall health of underserved communities, and who have shown a commitment to their program and the College of Science and Health.







Class of 2021 PA student received the Dr. Jack Mitchell Award

Mueske Nicole Mueske won an award plaque in honor of Dr. Jack Mitchell Award.  This award is presented to the graduate who has demonstrated leadership among his or her peers in college/university activities and in the provision of health care to community residents.









APA Student Challenge BowlDavid Ohnoki

Three Class of 2021 PA students joined PA students from 10 California PA schools for some competitive fun at the 2020 Virtual Student Challenge Bowl hosted by the California Academy of PAs (CAPA).  Congratulations Genessis Castorena, Avital Gravanis, and Katerina Yu for clinching 3rd place in the competition and representing CDU well! 

CDU PA Program Chosen to Administer Pilot Substance Abuse Disorder Curriculum

David Ohnoki

The CDU PA program was selected to administer the pilot version of the Expansion of Practitioner Education — PA (PRAC-ED-PA) Substance Use Disorder (SUD) curriculum during the 2021 academic year.   The application process was a highly competitive one in which 48 applications from across the nation were submitted. The curriculum is expected to enhance CDU graduates’ skills in alleviating the substance use disorder epidemic that disproportionately affects underserved communities. The CDU PA Program will also receive honoraria for its contribution to the overall improvement of the curriculum. This is a great achievement that puts the CDU PA program on the national spotlight! Click here to read the announcement.

PA Faculty Receives 2020 CDU Outstanding Professor Recognition

David Ohnoki

PA faculty member, Dr. David Martins, received the 2020 CDU Outstanding Professor Recognition awarded by the CDU Academic Senate.  This is a very distinguished award given to one faculty from across the entire campus community of CDU faculty. Dr. Martins was nominated by fellow CDU faculty, staff, and students, and was selected by the Academic Senate in recognition of his superlative record in teaching, research, and service to the community. Excellent job Dr. Martins and well-deserved!

Results from Class of 2019 Poster Featured in Medical Journal

David Ohnoki

Remarks by Wafa Ahmed, MHS, PA-C (Class of 2019) were featured in the online journal Pain Medicine News in an article entitled “Study Fails to Definitively Identify Sex Bias In Emergency Department Pain Treatment” (October 2020). Click here to read the article

First PA student in the nation accepted to the Yale University REACH scholar program.

David Ohnoki David Ohnoki, a first year student at Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science PA program has been named one of the 2020-2021 scholars in the REACH Program (Recognizing and Eliminating Disparities in Addiction through Culturally-informed Healthcare). Housed at Yale University, the program provides training in culturally-informed care in the area of behavioral health and medicine.

David will be one of few nationally selected trainees to engage in a year-long training program designed to supplement the education of medical students, residents, fellows, and allied health professional trainees in ways to improve health outcomes for racial and ethnic underrepresented minority patients with substance

AAPA ePosters- Class of 2019

The American Association of Physician Assistants (AAPA) Annual National Conference and includes research posters by students from the Physician Assistant Program Class of 2019. The posters featured undergo a tremendous and rigorous peer review process. Congratulations to the Class of 2019 honorees.

PA Program highlighted on AAPA News Central

PAs Efforts to Help Homeless in LA Stymied by Outmoded Regulations. Click on this link for the full article:

PA LindsayDr Martins

PA OF THE YEAR,Former CDU PA Program Faculty, Professor Lindsay Kozicz wins PA OF THE YEAR, UC San Diego Health System.


Dr. Artaza’s Work Wins Best Paper of the Year Award

Dr. Jorge N. Artaza, Associate Professor, Department of Health and Life Sciences, and Physician Assistant Program, College of Science and Health, has published a book chapter entitled “Vitamin D and Cardiac Differentiation,” which was included in Vitamin D Hormone,. Vitamins and Hormones, Vol 100, first edition, Feb 2016. Editor Gerald Litwack, from Elsevier, Academic Presjs, Oxford, UK. The other co-authors of the book chapter are Ms. Irene Kim (post–baccalaureate student in the Department of Health and Life Sciences) and Dr. Keith Norris from the Department of Medicine at UCLA. The PubMed citation and abstract are at  

At press time (of the May edition of the CDU News) we learned the Academic Senate bestowed Outstanding Professor Awards to Dr. Monica Ferrini, PhD and Dr. Shirley Evers Manly for outstanding contributions to CDU.

Jorge N. Artaza, MS, PhD