Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) - FAQ
Our KU School of Pharmacy Student Ambassadors answer some of our most frequently asked questions.
Frequently Asked Questions
Kara - You should just enjoy your last summer of nothing, because before long, you will have rotations every summer. :)
Alex - If you really want something to work on over the summer, there are two memory-intensive tasks that all P1 students face: drawing the 20 amino acids and the Top 200 drugs (know brand name, generic name, and indication). If you can work on those a little bit at a time over the summer, it should be a breeze when you take the tests.
Kara - Lack of free time. I used to think I had soooo much to do when I was in undergrad. This, I found out soon after attending pharmacy school, was a lie.
Alex - For me, the classroom environment was the biggest difference. I had gotten used to classes with more than 50 students being the exception, not the standard. In pharmacy school, most of your classes will include the entire class.
Rod - Time management. I’m used to taking three or four classes a semester, and my first semester in Pharmacy School I had six. I also commuted from Overland Park every day, which makes things a little harder. You really can’t put off studying thinking you’ll have time to do it later. If you have the time to an assignment that’s due in three weeks, just do it and move on!
Alex - Changing my study habits. I identified courses that required more time and began studying for those earlier. I also began studying with other students. By doing so, you can figure out what others think are important, and that can be a huge help in focusing your studies.
Kelsie - Learning to say no. Your time will be limited and chances are, you’ll be studying a lot and maintaining a job. My first year, I cut out many extracurriculars. Once I got a handle on my study habits and work schedule, I slowly added things back to my schedule. You never want to over commit and become overwhelmed.
Kara - Your average day P1 year is going to look like this: Class from 9 - 2 p.m. Lab two days a week from in the afternoon. Many people work at their outside jobs on afternoons when they do not have lab. There are meetings for club organizations over the noon hour almost daily.
Anthony - Pros: Depending on the pharmacy, you might get a head start on learning how to counsel patients about medications. You will begin to learn the brand and generic names of medications. And you’ll learn about medications before you cover them in class. Cons: If you get scheduled too many hours, it could interfere with time for studying and school activities.
Kara - I think 15-20 hours is a good amount to work, but find what is comfortable for you. Don’t work so much that you stress out about school. School is your No. 1 priority.
Anthony - Yes, organizations are a great way to meet people from not only your class, but other classes as well. Student organizations also provide opportunities to network with professionals outside the school.
Alex - Join the organizations that cover topics you are passionate about. Don’t join an organization just because you think you need to for your future career. Find the organizations that can help you elucidate your career pathway and get involved in the issues that you’re interested in. Once you find those organizations, you’ll be happy to make the time that you need for these organizations.
Kelsie - Student organizations are a great place to meet other people. However, don’t feel like you have to join every group. Find the organizations that fit your needs. I waited until my second year in pharmacy school to join and I think that was the right decision for me. You won’t have time to be an active member in every group so choose ones that will really develop you as a student.