4 Ways Pharmacists Can Stay Connected With Their Pharmacy School

NOVEMBER 27, 2017

After graduation, you may be wondering how you can still stay connected with your pharmacy school. Graduation does not have to be the end of your pharmacy school experience. Universities are always eager to have alumni participate in various programs and community events. This can be a great way to give back to your pharmacy school and serve as a mentor to students.

Check out these 4 ways pharmacists can stay connected with their pharmacy school:

1.      Serve as a preceptor for pharmacy students. 

Serving as a preceptor is a great way to educate pharmacy students. Contact your pharmacy school to determine the requirements. Some programs require that you have been a licensed pharmacist for a certain number of years before serving as a preceptor.  As a preceptor, you will generally take one to three students per clinical rotation. You will have the opportunity to mentor students in your area of specialty and play an important role in their pharmacy education. Various rotations may include ambulatory care, drug information, community, hospital, or consultant pharmacy. Rotation assignments may include journal club, case presentations, and disease state discussions.

2.      Create a didactic elective course.

Serving as an adjunct faculty can be a great way to stay connected with your pharmacy school. If you are interested in teaching, contact the department of pharmacy practice to determine the requirements for submitting elective course ideas. Pharmacy schools are always looking for innovative elective courses to enhance students’ knowledge.  Elective courses are generally held one time per week for one to two hours, and can also be a great way to earn extra income. Classes are usually small, so this could be less intimidating than teaching a large pharmacy course. Start by creating a course syllabus with learning objectives and lecture topics. The pharmacy school will review your course and decide whether to accept the elective. Various elective ideas include medical writing, consultant pharmacy, drug information case discussions, women’s health, and pediatrics.

3.      Present to a student organization.

Student organizations are always looking for alumni to present about their pharmacy career path.  Pharmacy students enjoy learning about various career opportunities.  If you have completed a pharmacy residency, then you may also participate in a residency showcase or round table discussion at the pharmacy school.  This can be a great opportunity to mentor students interested in pursuing a residency.  You can review their curriculum vitae and offer important tips about applying to residency programs.

4.      Provide a presentation at a continuing education program.

Many pharmacy schools offer continuing education (CE) programs and are usually on the lookout for talented alumni to serve as presenters. Your knowledge and expertise can be a great asset to the CE program. There may also be opportunities to create online CE programs. This is also a good way to earn extra income as you generally receive an honorarium for presenting. Topic ideas may include pharmacy law, new drug approvals, diabetes therapy management, consultant pharmacy practice, and complementary and alternative medicine.

Jennifer Gershman, PharmD, CPh
Jennifer Gershman, PharmD, CPh
Jennifer Gershman, PharmD, CPh, received her PharmD degree from Nova Southeastern University (NSU) College of Pharmacy in 2006 and completed a 2-year drug information residency. She served as a pharmacy professor at NSU’s College of Pharmacy for 6 years, managed the drug information center, and conducted medication therapy management reviews. Dr. Gershman has published research on prescription drug abuse, regulatory issues, and drug information in various scholarly journals. Additionally, she received the Sheriff’s Special Recognition Award for her collaboration with the Broward, Florida Sheriff’s Office to prevent prescription drug abuse through a drug disposal program. She has also presented at pharmacist and physician continuing education programs on topics that include medication errors, prescription drug abuse, and legal and regulatory issues. Dr. Gershman can be followed on Twitter @jgershman2