Meet Kate Ernest: Physician’s Assistant at Fallon Medical Complex

By Aaron Smith

Since she is a rather new employee at the Fallon Medical Complex, many may not know much about Kate Ernest and her career as a Physician’s Assistant. Here’s a bit of insight on what she does and how she got started working here in Baker.

Kate began her studies wanting to work in physical therapy. After finishing her undergrad and getting accepted into PT school, she decided that she was missing something with this career choice. So, she “took a leap of faith” and switched gears completely.

Kate would apply to eleven different schools, eventually enrolling at Rocky Mountain College. Ernest pointed out that the PA program often felt like “trying to drink out of a fire hydrant;” it was 27 straight months of constant information needing to be retained.

After finishing her schooling at Rocky, Ernest knew she wanted to work somewhere rural. She had received an email from a recruiter, but was hesitant to even open it. Instead, she met with the recruiter in person, and learned about an opportunity here in Baker. She was excited for this opportunity for two reasons. First of all, it would allow her to work in eastern Montana, which was an area she had hoped to be in. Secondly, the application highlighted the fact that they were willing to accept those recently out of school.

Soon after applying, Kate Ernest found herself here in Baker as a part of the Fallon Medical Complex team. “People here have a team approach,” she said. To her, it has felt like everyone works together, and nobody tries to one-up their coworkers.

Along with enjoying the people she works with, Ernest also enjoys the fact that she gets to utilize her previous experiences while on the job. With an undergraduate degree in kinesiology and experience in the mental health field, Ernest enjoys having the opportunity to utilize her versatile background while on the job.