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Roosevelt University College of Pharmacy
Providing Tools for Success of First-Year Pharmacy Students in a Three-Year Program

by Cony Hartnett, PS3, SSHP Webmaster/Historian; Camille Andrews, PS3, SSHP Treasurer; Jordan Faison, PS3, SSHP President

While numerous factors play a role in the success of a pharmacy student, the appropriate tools can provide first-year students with a solid foundation upon which to build professionally. To meet this need, the Student Society of Healthy Systems Pharmacy at the Roosevelt University College of Pharmacy decided to focus our professional development project on facilitating the preparation of newly admitted pharmacy students to succeed in an accelerated three-year program. We gauged the need and interest of students and collaborated with campus and clinical faculty to implement a fundraiser to provide necessary tools for success in their Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experience class, pharmaceutical laboratory class, and out in the field for rotations. These tools included drug cards, laboratory coats, and clinical pocket reference guides. The money raised from these fundraisers was designated for professional development opportunities and initiatives of our members in the future.

We provided Sigler drug cards, from which students are required to take weekly quizzes; long white laboratory coats, which students must wear in compounding labs; and the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy Clinical Pharmacy Pocket Guides, created by the Triangle College of Clinical Pharmacy Student Chapter, which contain lab values, tables, and diagrams for a quick reference, especially useful while on rotation.  Members of our fundraising committee researched different supplies and discounts to maximize profit margins and advertised through social media as well as with printed fliers to adequately promote the fundraisers. We utilized both online order forms and in-person sales and offered multiple payment options to accommodate as many students as possible.

Our chapter was able to raise $1,280 prior to the start of the school year by having a fundraiser where we sold the drug cards, laboratory coats, and clinical pocket guides to first-year students. By having this fundraiser so early, we were able to expose the new students to SSHP. The money we raised for our chapter went towards holding membership drives, having guest speakers, and sending our executive board members to ASHP Midyear to present our chapter’s poster. The fundraiser also gave our chapter the chance to meet and interact with the new students, as well as recruit potential members prior to the start of our Fall Term.

During the student chapter poster presentation at ASHP Midyear in New Orleans, a group of our executive board members distributed handouts and discussed our poster with students from other pharmacy schools. We also walked around and talked about other school’s posters with the other pharmacy students in attendance. This served as an excellent opportunity to network with SSHP members from all over the country and gather ideas from their chapter projects in order to further improve our own chapter. Not only did several other student chapters show marked interest in our poster topic, our poster won an Outstanding Professional Development Project Award!

Chapter executive board members who presented at Midyear, pictured from left to right: Camille Andrews, PS-3, SSHP Treasurer; Amanda Mertsching, PS-3, SSHP Professional Development Chair; Jordan Faison, PS-3, SSHP President; Joelitta Ansong, PS-3, SSHP Secretary

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