Karen Berger, PharmD
Karen Berger, PharmD, graduated from the University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy in 2001. She has worked in community pharmacies for over 17 years as a Pharmacist in Charge, staff, and floater pharmacist for a large chain. Currently, she is a pharmacist at an independent pharmacy in Northern NJ. She can be reached at email@example.com
We are back with more pharmacists who have exciting side hustles! After exploring a variety of bonus jobs in part 1 and part 2, we will focus here on 5 pharmacists with interesting part-time professions or projects.
Nikida Metellus, PharmD
Metellus is a theme park blogger and creator of themeparkhipster.com, where she shows her fans how to create the perfect solo theme park vacation. Metellus also authored 'The Solo Theme Park Traveler’s Guide: Tips and Tricks for Solo Theme Park Hopping in Florida,' and has recently launched a podcast, The Theme Park Hipster Show.
Metellus got the idea when the Wizarding World of Harry Potter opened, and she couldn’t convince any of her friends or family to stand in a 12-hour line with her, in the blazing Florida heat. To Metellus, it was a historic day, but to others, it was a waste of time. She made the trip solo, and gained the confidence to try another theme park herself. After spending a day at Busch Gardens, she was hooked. Metellus has made this a very exciting side hustle, and feels fortunate to be able to use her blog to connect with other theme park enthusiasts around the world.
Lavar Walker, PharmD
A pharmacist for 16 years, Walker was always told that he should have been a comedian. During his last year of pharmacy school at Xavier University College of Pharmacy, he started doing comedy in New Orleans. After graduation, he moved to Atlanta to work full time as a pharmacist. After a 12 to 14 hour work day, he would go out to local bars and clubs to tell jokes.
Despite getting booed and rejected at some brutal clubs, at first, he pursued his dream, and worked on developing a stronger routine. Since then, Walker has developed quite an impressive resume, including winning a national comedy competition, and touring with Shaquille O’Neal in his Shaq All Star Comedy Jam. He has also performed with Kevin Hart and Cedric the Entertainer. This year, he will appear in his first film, Uncle Drew, alongside Tiffany Haddish and Shaquille O’Neal. Walker says his best comedy material comes from the challenges of being a retail pharmacist in a big chain.
Doni McClendon, PharmD
A graduate of Mercer University Class of 2001, McClendon has owned a home-based bakery, D-Marie Sweets, for 7 years. She had always enjoyed cooking, and throwing dinner parties for friends and family.
McClendon got her start when she had shared with another pharmacist that she wanted to take a cooking class, and he gave her a gift certificate for her birthday. The only class that fit into her busy retail pharmacist schedule was a cake decorating/fondant class, so she took it, and was immediately hooked. Now, in her bakery, she says the most popular treats are small treats, such as cake pops, cookies, and rice krispy treats. Also very popular are her very beautiful 6-inch focal cakes—centerpiece cakes that are decorations to go with the theme, not to be eaten at the party.
Elizabeth DeCarli-Remes, RPh
Remes, a pharmacist for 35 years, is looking forward to a second career in retirement. After having skin/health issues, she started making her own handcrafted soaps. She started out with no-color, unscented, good-for-you oils soaps (which she still makes for cancer patients), but then expanded to fancy, scented products in bakery shapes, such as cupcakes, pie slices, and tarts.
Remes calls it a great hobby that combines basic chemistry with creativity. She finds the creativity to be just what she needs, as pharmacy does not allow much creativity. Her sales come from word of mouth and a small Facebook presence. She is working with a marketing team and starting to enter the craft show market. She finds it amusing that some of her products are so life-like, that people have tried to eat the soaps, thinking they were real desserts, and she has to put 'This is not Food stickers on her soaps.
Jessica Louie, PharmD
Louie, a critical care pharmacist and assistant professor, is an entrepreneur and founder and CEO of Find Your Script and Petite Style Script. Find Your Script is about raising awareness for the pharmacist profession, education for healthcare students, with resources and advice, and bringing together healthcare professionals to optimize patient care. Petite Style Script is a petite fashion and lifestyle blog created to inspire women to feel confident and empowered by their outfits and wardrobe choices. The blog was created to help busy women find their style, focusing on practical and classic options. Louie believes in investing in quality wardrobe pieces that spark joy, and help women feel confident.
I love hearing about all the pharmacists out there with exciting side hustles—we sure are a fascinating bunch! If you have a side hustle, tell me all about it at firstname.lastname@example.org.