Arthur Wood Joins Physician Assistant Advisory Board
Dr. Arthur Wood IV marvels at the many achievements of A.E. Wood, Sr., a celebrated member of the Mississippi College family for many years.
For starters, the 3,400-seat A.E. Wood Coliseum is named as a tribute to his great grandfather, Dr. A.E. Wood, Sr. Motorists along I-20 can easily spot the domed home of the MC Choctaws basketball team since 1977. The spacious venue hosts graduations, Lady Choctaws volleyball games, concerts, and sports camps.
A.E. Wood, Sr., served as an athletics director for four decades, was a Clinton mayor, and headed the MC Chemistry Department. The Clinton library was named for him.
Dr. A.E. Wood, Sr., lived from 1885 through 1968. He left quite a legacy in the Hinds County city for Wood family members for generations to come.
“I obviously never met A.E. Wood, Sr., but he was somewhat of a renaissance man with many interests (farming, teaching, research, politics, and athletics),” says Dr. Arthur Wood IV, a physician from Madison. “He had two sons who graduated from MC and went on to become physicians.”
There’s even a book written about A.E. Wood, Sr.
In 2021, Dr. Arthur Wood IV is also proving to be a valuable member of the Blue & Gold family. Arthur is a 2004 MC graduate (a chemistry major). He recently was selected to join the Mississippi College physician assistant program advisory board.
Arthur attends his first board meeting in April and is thrilled to be more involved with the state’s first physician assistant program. Created in 2011, the MC program based at the Baptist Healthplex trains graduate students to work under the supervision of physicians.
“The MC PA program has already played an important role in solidifying the supply side of the healthcare economics equation,” Dr. Wood said. "As we have seen with COVID-19, demand can spike dramatically, and it's vital to have a robust healthcare workforce. Given PA's work across many specialties, they helped our system weather quite a storm.”
Dr. Wood plus two siblings are MC graduates. Two others attended MC for a couple of years before transferring. “I really enjoyed my time there. All four of my siblings attended MC as well, so I feel MC is my second home.” Arthur and his wife stay busy with their four children in Madison.
Dr. Wood is a May 2009 graduate of the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson. He’s worked since January 2020 as the Emergency Department Medical Director at Merit Health Central. His specialty is family medicine. He also teaches classes as an adjunct instructor at the William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine in Hattiesburg. Arthur did his residency at the North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo through June 2012. He’s worked at hospitals in Wayne and Bolivar counties.
MC PA leaders value his expertise and deep family ties to the Baptist-affiliated university.
“The family history link to MC is very rich,” says Dr. Andrew Porter, a physician assistant professor.
His service on the board is well-timed. The newest class of about P.A. graduate students will attend their first classes in mid-May. The program enrolls a little over 90 students.
The PA associate preclinical director, Porter, says Dr. Wood joins a superb group of P.A. advisors. They include Dr. Lee Nichols, a Central Mississippi surgeon, Dr. Keith Watson, chief of staff at the North Mississippi Medical Center, and two physician assistants Courtney Wright and Melissa Minor. Both are graduates of the MC PA program. A member since day one and mentor to numerous medical professionals is Dr. Rod Cutrer, a semi-retired physician assistant professor at Mississippi College.