Pharmacy is a doctoral health profession in which licensed professionals provide information about medications to patients and other healthcare professionals. As “medication experts,” pharmacists are concerned with safeguarding the public’s health in matters relating to medication distribution and use and disease state management. Pharmacists play a vital role in improving patient care through the medicine and information they provide.
Top 10 Reasons to Become a Pharmacist
- I Want to Help People Get Well
- I Like to Work Directly with Patients
- I Enjoy a Wide Variety of Career Opportunities
- I Can Benefit from the Increased Demand For Pharmacists
- I Want to be an Important Member of the Healthcare Team
- I Can Have Job Mobility, Stability, and Flexibility
- I am Excited to be a Part of Major Innovations in Drug Therapy
- I Want to Work with State-of-the-Art Technology
- I Can Help Defend Against Bioterrorism
- I Would Like to Be a Highly Respected Member of My Community
—from the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy
Applications for pharmacy schools are processed through the Pharmacy College Centralized Application Service (PharmCAS).
Applications should be submitted in the year prior to the year for which you are seeking admission. Many pharmacy schools have rolling admissions, so applicants would do well to apply as early as possible.
Following the standard course suggestions for students applying to medical school will put you in good stead for the curriculum required to enter pharmacy school; however, some schools will require other courses (e.g., Anatomy and Physiology), so it is best to consult with individual schools’ requirements as early as possible.
Entrance Exam Requirements
The Pharmacy College Admission Test (PCAT) is required for admission to both pharmacy schools. The PCAT tests on six content areas: verbal ability, biology, reading comprehension, chemistry, quantitative ability, and an essay section.
Letters of Evaluation/Recommendation
Your adviser from the Health Professions Advising Committee cancompose a composite letter from the letters of recommendation you solicit from professors, supervisors, research mentors, and others who know you in professional or service contexts; that letter will also contain a rating of you on behalf of the committee based on your academic record, service, experience, and other factors. However, some schools will not accept such letters, but prefer to receive letters from individuals, including a pharmacist. Students should consult early and closely with their adviser to determine whom to solicit for letters of recommendation.
Pharmacy schools usually require personal, on-campus interviews, though how many applicants are interviewed and at what point in the application timeline those interviews take place varies widely. Members of the Health Professions Advising Committee conduct at least one mock interview with applicants the spring before they apply; subsequent mock interviews are readily available and heartily encouraged.
- Rutgers University Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy
- Thomas Jefferson University Jefferson College of Pharmacy
- Temple University School of Pharmacy
- University of the Sciences PharmD program