A year-end message from Dean Ronald Ragan

A year ago, the KU School of Pharmacy was closing out one of its most challenging years on record. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we pivoted successfully, and our world-class education continued remotely. It wasn’t easy, but our faculty and students adapted in remarkable fashion. They came back to campus for portions of the spring semester and completed courses, barely skipping a beat. Despite difficult circumstances, the Class of 2021 had a 90% first-time pass rate for the North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination compared to a national rate of 85%. On the Multistate Pharmacy Jurisprudence Examination, our 2021 first-time pass rate was 92% while the national rate was 82%. At 71%, our residency match rates were also better than national averages by 6%.

As we close out 2021 with a pandemic that stubbornly refuses to yield, in many ways the School of Pharmacy is in a better place than a year ago. Our students learned first-hand the invaluable role of pharmacists during a worldwide pandemic with many of them on the front lines in their jobs and rotations across the state. As we have shared before, our faculty, staff, students and alumni also stepped up in 2021 to deliver thousands of COVID vaccinations at clinics in our building and across the state. I can’t thank them enough.

Our faculty continues to shine. In addition to delivering a world-class Doctor of Pharmacy education, the KU School of Pharmacy is 17th among all schools of pharmacy in National Institutes of Health funding. Our researchers are using cutting-edge methods to gain new knowledge of diseases and develop new pharmaceuticals that hold much promise. Their work also creates rare opportunities for graduate and undergraduate students to explore future career choices in practice, teaching and research.

I consider 2021 a remarkable year filled with many successes. I want to thank our faculty, staff and students at KU for weathering the storm with a true-blue, Rock Chalk spirit. I’m also grateful for our alumni and friends for their continued support. No doubt, there will be more challenges ahead, but I am confident that together, the KU School of Pharmacy will rise above them. Best wishes for a renewing holiday break and a safe, healthy and happy new year.

Best Regards,

Ronald Ragan, R.Ph., Ph.D. Dean and Professor The University of Kansas School of Pharmacy