My Ideal Job in Pharmacy

When people think of pharmacists, most only think of retail pharmacy and hospital pharmacy. While they may be the most well-known, there are MANY more options to choose from. Some jobs as a pharmacist include hospital, community/retail, ambulatory care, geriatrics, academia, industrial, nuclear, specialty, government, pediatrics, compounding, and many more.

Currently, I am a P2 with internship exposure to hospital pharmacy, as well as an independent pharmacy, Realo Discount Drugs. These two are complete opposites with one being in-patient and one being out-patient. At Realo Discount Drugs, you have more patient interaction and I love that. I am able to talk with patients, give them the counseling they need, give immunizations, and check their blood pressure/blood glucose. At the hospital, the pharmacists are more behind the scenes helping answer nurse/physician questions while checking and preparing medications. Although both fields have their pro’s and con’s, personally, my ideal pharmacy job wouldn’t be either one.

I would prefer to work in an ambulatory care clinic where I am completely hands on with patients in a clinical setting. My ideal job would be in a diabetes clinic where I can work one-on-one with diabetic patients and help them get back on track. Diabetes is such a huge problem and is continuing to worsen in the United States. Not only would I love to work with these patients directly, but this is something I am passionate about. I would love to get a collaborative practice agreement (CPA) where I can work with other providers, write prescriptions, and help manage the care of patients.

Amanda Smith, P2

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Interviewing for Pharmacy School 101

For those of you who are going through the interviewing process for pharmacy school, I have a few tidbits of advice to help you along the way. I understand firsthand the stress and struggle of preparing for pharmacy school, but hopefully these tips & tricks will help to alleviate some of this pressure. Here are some tips:

1. Prepare for interview questions

When I was going through the interview process, I searched commonly asked interview questions and practiced answering them with others. By doing this role-playing exercise, I was able to become more confident with answering these questions, and it helped to alleviate some of the stress and anxiety I was experiencing. I even went to the extent of searching some scenario-based questions as well to practice thinking critically on the spot.

2. Be on time and be professional

Punctuality is very important on interview days. You should always aim to arrive at your interview location early to reduce the risk of being late. Also, showing up early will make you look good to interviewers. Professionalism is another big thing when it comes to interviews. This includes making sure that you are wearing the correct attire and presenting yourself in a professional manner. The interview process starts when you arrive at the location and it does not end until you leave. Therefore, you should always be mindful of how you are acting and treating people.

3. Smile & have a positive attitude

When you go into an interview, you have to be happy and optimistic. Smiling and being nice to those around you can only help you, and having an overall positive attitude will show your interviewers that you are confident. Don’t ever doubt yourself in the interview process. Just remember that if you received an interview, you are already more than halfway there! If they weren’t interested, they wouldn’t have asked you to come for an interview!

4. Find ways to turn your negatives into positives

A common question among interviewers is “What are your strengths and weaknesses?” The best way to answer this question is by giving a strength and giving a weakness that can also be turned into a strength. For example, one of my weaknesses is that it takes me a long time to do things, but it’s also a strength because it shows that I am very thorough and meticulous when it comes to completing tasks. So, next time you get that question, find a way to turn your weakness into something good!

5. Research the school you’re interviewing at

It is always a good idea to research the program that you are interviewing for. You should be aware of some of the key aspects and features of the schools you are interviewing for. Also, it is good to be aware of some of the things that make the pharmacy program(s) unique. Before interviewing at Campbell, I actually did a lot of research about the school, the program, and the unique aspects as well. Although they may not ask you specific questions regarding your knowledge of these things, it is good to be aware.

6. Ask questions

Interviewers love to see you ask questions because it shows that you are truly interested in their pharmacy program. Before going to interviews, I would suggest brainstorming and writing down some questions that you could possibly ask during the interview process. Sometimes it is hard to think of questions to ask on the spot, so make a list beforehand and have them in mind!

7. Be authentic and genuine

This is the most important piece of advice that I can give to you: BE YOURSELF! You should stay true to who you are at all times, including interviews. You should never have to change who you are in any circumstance. Besides, interviewers like it more when their interviewees are sincere. Also, it takes too much effort to be someone that you’re not!

Hopefully, I have helped in some way! Although it can be nerve wracking, you must remember to take a step back, take a deep breath, and relax. If you utilize the tips that I have given you, you will surely come out on top!

Amber Hill, P2

Campus Organization Spotlight

One of the things I have really come to value at Campbell is the vast array of student led organizations and the opportunity to become a part of and lead in organizations one feels passionate about. At the beginning of each school year, there is an Organization Fair that allows for new students to see all of the clubs, organizations, and fraternities that the college has to offer and for returning students to be reminded of what options there are to see if there is anything else they would like to become a part of. One of the clubs that I became a part of and took on a new leadership role in this year was for the Professional Alumni Student Association, also known as PASA. PASA serves to help facilitate networking opportunities between current students and past alumni in addition to building interprofessional relationships since PASA is open to all graduate programs under the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. This includes pharmacy, physician assistant, physical therapy, and public health students. In this organization, I took on the role of Events Chair. In this position, I help plan events for club members in conjunction with the President and the rest of the PASA executive board. One event we held most recently was a “CU at Dinner” event. The club tries to organize these at least once a year. At these events, alumni welcome students and sometimes other alumni as well into their home for a meal together. Students can make connections with alumni and other students, in addition to gaining helpful insight and advice on their future profession from the alumni at these events. Some events we are trying to plan for the upcoming year include a networking panel at the CPHS Combine Day and a PASA Etiquette Dinner. PASA really is a great organization to become a part of for those who would like to develop and build their professional network.

Angela Stubbs, P3

Community Rotation Spotlight

I left school at the end of P1 year to go back home for the summer and although I was excited for the time off, I was anxiously waiting for the month of June. After a year of hard work in the classroom, there is nothing more rewarding than getting to go out into practice on your first rotation. I had the pleasure of completing my intro to community rotation at Cannon Pharmacy. Being an independent pharmacy, I knew it was going to be different than Walgreens where I work, but I never expected to have the experience that I did.

Cannon is one of those pharmacies that offers a variety of patienAngel Pic 1t care services. They sell a wide range of durable medical equipment, have free delivery services, meet with patients to help them select Medicare and Medicare part D plans, offer medication adherence packaging, and provide medication therapy management (MTM) services. Throughout the month, I got to participate in each of these services and had a lot of patient interaction. I especially enjoyed getting to do comprehensive medication reviews with patients to go over important counseling information and address any concerns that they had about their current regimen. In between interacting with patients, I was learning about the business side of running an independent pharmacy, working with my preceptor to further my knowledge on the topics that we covered in class P1 year, and putting together a presentation on CBD oils which was very interesting to learn about.

I went into this rotation expecting to be in the store 9-5 Monday through Friday. Although I spent most of my time there, I had the opportunity to be involved in the community on multiple occasions. First, I went to the senior center nearby to do blood glucose and blood pressure checks for the residents. In between their bingo games, they would come up to the table to meet with me. I checked whichever they would like, wrote down their results so they could start a log, and discussed different lifestyle changes they could make when applicable. This is something that one of the pharmacists from Cannon usually does once a month, so I am glad that I was provided with the chance to go.

The other unique community involvement I had took place at Turning Point Family Services. In order to become a foster parent, there is a required class that teaches you about medication administration, safety/disposal, and how to properly document doses on a Medication Administration Record (MAR). My preceptor hosts this presentation quarterly, so it was time for him to do it in June. I never expected to do something like this, but he allowed me to take the lead on the presentation and he just helped answer questions as needed. The main part of the presentation focused on counseling them on each route of administration to ensure they knew how to properly administer a dose to a child. This included things like inhaler use, eye/ear drops, and transdermal patches to name a few. At the end of the presentation, they must pass an exam in order to become a certified foster parent. It was rewarding knowing that I played a part in their future by teaching them what they needed to know about medication treatments.

I can’t thank my preceptor enough for giving me a great experience for my first rotation. I enjoyed having the opportunity to not only interact with patients at the store, but also in the community. I learned a lot throughout the month and am looking forward to another great year in the classroom before going out on rotation again next summer.

Angel Oakley, P2

CPHS Back to School BBQ 2019

It’s August! You know what that means; it means it is time for the start of a new school year in the Creek! One thing that all new students will quickly learn about Campbell and the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences is that there are A LOT of traditions! Particularly, there are several of them that are used to kick off the start and end of the school year. One of the major back to school events in the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences is the Annual Back to School BBQ and Organization Fair. In previous years, these events were held separately, but this year these two events were combined into one. The Back to School BBQ gives students and professors from all of the CPHS programs to come talk to one another, have a meal, and celebrate the start of another school year together in an interprofessional manner. This year catering was provided by Cooper’s BBQ along with a vegetarian option, and Mama Bird’s ice cream was available for dessert! Prior to the start of the meal, numerous student organizations set up booths for interested students to come and check out throughout the time that dinner was served. This provided first year students the opportunity to network with returning students and get exposure to the numerous organizations, clubs, and fraternities that CPHS has to offer to its students. As a current P3, this has been one of my favorite events at the start of each school year. I will miss being able to partake next year when I am away on rotations.

Angela Stubbs, P3

Angela 2019 Pic 1

Fitting in Fitness & Nutrition during Pharmacy School

Most of the time throughout pharmacy school, we are taught to take care of our patients and somewhat put them first in our lives. When we do this and have this type of mindset we very easily tend to fail to take care of ourselves. Taking care of yourself as the healthcare provider is important because if your health becomes detrimental to your work, then you are unable to do your job as a pharmacist such as taking care of your patients and then ones who look to you for advice. Two of the most important things that a person should focus on when they are preparing to lead a healthier life is their fitness and nutrition. I am going to share a few tips on how to keep focus on these and manage a healthy life while in pharmacy school because taking care of yourself in school is something you won’t regret later.
1. Time Management
Being in pharmacy school allows for crazy and hectic schedules that always contain lots of work and studying. With this being said, it becomes very hard to manage a balanced life. It also becomes hard for a person to try and take time out of their busy daily schedules to go to the gym or to do some sort of exercise. In order to efficiently complete my school work and whatever else I needed to do in a singular day and also go to the gym, I had to gain some very good time management skills. One thing that really helps me manage my time well is my planner. I will initially write all due dates and important dates in my planner so that when something comes up I don’t miss it. Then, I will go into my planner daily and write out every single thing I am going to do that day and what time each thing will be done. So essentially inside my daily planner, I keep myself on an hourly schedule. I always add in an hour to an hour and a half for my exercise time. This allows me to still get my other work done that needs to be done that day and it also allows me to get out and get moving. This also helps me to not feel bad about spending my time in other places other than studying because I have already assured myself that I will get everything done that I need to. Time management is the most important skill that one needs to have coming into pharmacy school in order to lead a balanced life.
2. Study while on the equipment at the gym
Some may believe that even with having a planner, they still have a hard time finding the free time they need to exercise. Some students tend to feel guilty if they do anything else other than study. Since I have come into pharmacy school, whenever I go to the gym I always find someone on the elliptical or the treadmill who has something that they have laid in front of them to study. This is a really great way to get your exercise and study at the same exact time. So, while running or using other equipment at the gym such as the bike, it is very beneficial to bring study materials with you so that you can study while exercising. This helps pharmacy students to get their work done and also exercise while not feeling so guilty about it.
3. Meal prepping
While it is certainly important to keep active, it is also important to maintain healthy eating habits and good nutrition. Many students in pharmacy school find it especially hard to eat healthy while being in school due to the difficulty of managing their time in order to find the time to make their meals. Meal prepping is an excellent way maintain good health while in pharmacy school because the student could prepare all their meals on the weekend and then eat them during the week while they’re busy and don’t have time to cook. This is also a great way to save money by not eating at restaurants and fast food places so much. The unhealthy habit of eating fast food not only depletes your finances, but also takes a toll on your body. Therefore, my advice would be to pick a day each week to prepare healthy meals for the week ahead. Grill some chicken, prepare a pot of grain, and choose a vegetable so that you have the base ingredients available for your daily meals. Then, instead of going out to restaurants with your peers, invite them over for home-cooked meals whenever you do have the chance to cook. This will actually become fun and will end up making cooking less of a chore.
4. Don’t have time to prepare meals? Get a meal plan.
In pharmacy school there are so many different students and each different person can handle their own number of things that they have on their plate. Some students can juggle many things with the time that they have, and some students can only handle a minimal amount. With that, some students feel like they can handle meal prepping once a week. However, there are other students who feel like they can’t handle the meal prepping and some who don’t even have the space or kitchen to cook in. In this case, instead of eating fast food all the time and leading an unhealthy life nutritionally, they could add a meal plan which their university provides. Meal plans are beneficial and easy because the student can just go and swipe their card while choosing what they’d like to eat that is already cooked for them. This option is definitely the one that takes the least amount of the students’ personal time. It is also great because the universities most of the time always have healthy options available. So, if you are a person who has very limited time, this may be the best option for you since it is more affordable than eating out for every meal, its healthier, and it requires the least amount of time.
5. Understand that your health is just as important as your school work
The last and most important point that I’m going to make is that you as a student must take your own health into consideration before your school work just like after getting out into practice, you must take care of yourself in order to take care of your patients. You as the student must understand the importance of your own health because you are the only person that can ultimately make a difference in that. If you are determined to stay healthy while in pharmacy school, then you will. On the contrary, if you don’t care about taking care of yourself and begin to live more of a sedentary life, then you will not keep healthy. Being nutritionally healthy and fit in pharmacy school is certainly something that is doable, it may not be easy, but it can/does happen, and it is WORTH it.
Overall, take care of yourself and remain healthy throughout pharmacy school. Although it’s important to get good grades, you shouldn’t let yourself deteriorate in the process. Pharmacy school is a difficult but rewarding journey. We have to continually keep ourselves updated on current practice, but we must also practice what we preach. If you take all of this advice, I guarantee you won’t regret it.
Molly Stone, P2

CU Homecoming and Scholarship Ceremony

Every year in late October during Campbell University’s Homecoming Weekend, the College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences holds a Scholarship Ceremony. The Scholarship Ceremony provides an opportunity for scholarship recipients to meet thMaggie Scholarship2eir scholarship donors, enabling students to get to know their donors on a personal level and giving students the chance to express their gratitude. During the Scholarship Ceremony, there are three students selected to give speeches describing their experiences at Campbell, scholarship recipients are asked to stand and receive recognition for the scholarship they received, and a video is played thanking the donors for their support. Families are also invited to the event, and following the ceremony, the scholarship recipient and their families can attend a Homecoming tailgate and the afternoon Campbell football game. The scholarship recipients can attend the tailgate and football game for free, but family members are required to pay a small fee. The Homecoming tailgate is a fun, relaxed environment with great barbecue catered. It is another example of how Campbell recognizes student accomplishments and appreciates the generosity of its donors.

Maggie Reyes, P3

Maggie Scholarship