Student Challenge Bowl

Can you answer these three questions?

  • What is the most common cause of anemia in the elderly?
  • Although heparin affects all coagulation tests, the MOST sensitive test is what?
  • What physical sign is indicative of acute cholecystitis?

More importantly can you do it while hundreds of people cheer you on and hundreds of dollars of potential winnings lie in the balance?

Picture yourself sitting on stage with two of your classmates. There are two other teams of three up there with you from two other PA programs. You look out in the audience. There is a sea of faces. A lot of people you don’t know. But those dozen people just right of center down in front are from your program, two are instructors; you know you can’t let them down. As the sweat rolls down the back of your neck you give yourself a pep talk. “I’ve finished my first year of didactics; I’m into my second rotation; I know this stuff.” You swallow hard. The first question comes. Your classmate buzzes in too early. “You fool!” You think to yourself. “Don’t you know we lose points for wrong answers?” That’s okay, you know you have 10 seconds to talk it out, it works, and your group answers the question correctly! “I think we can do this! But I’ll take over the buzzer!”

Of course, this refers to the CAPA Student Medical Challenge Bowl at CAPA’s Summer Conference in San Diego. The Challenge Bowl will be held on Saturday starting at 5:45 p.m. The teams consist of three students from each PA program; one team per PA program. “Hundreds of dollars” might have been an exaggeration. The actual prize will be a $250 check for the winning student society and selected prizes for winning students supported by CAPA. The winning team will have the privilege of displaying the Challenge Bowl Trophy at their program location for the year.

So, talk to your class and gather your best and your brightest minds to compete in this year’s CAPA Student Medical Challenge Bowl. To register, email the registration form to or print and fax it to (714) 427-0324.

Please note: the deadline to apply is Monday, July 3, 2017. CAPA will not take any registrations after that date.

Be sure your best and brightest are also brave and confident when they are sitting on that stage.

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FYI: the answers to the three questions above are: 1. Iron Deficiency; 2. Activated Partial Thromboplastin Time (PTT); 3. Murphy’s Sign.