Pre-Health career pathways

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Pre-Pharmacy pathway

Pre-Pharmacy PathwayPre-health advising

You are encouraged to meet with a pre-health advisor at least once a semester to discuss options for careers in medicine, opportunities to gain relevant experience, discussing the best time to apply, preparation for the GRE, the OTCAS application, and much more. For more information, schedule an appointment with your advisor.

To earn a Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) degree, students will need to complete four academic years of professional pharmacy study.

Overview

Four-year plan

College year 1

Goals

  • Maintain a strong GPA and focus on coursework. 
  • Make an appointment with a pre-health advisor to introduce yourself. 
  • Begin to get involved with clubs and student organizations.
  • Also, begin volunteering and gaining clinical experience.

Involvement (Clubs and student organizations)

Clubs and Organizations

Volunteer

College year 2

Goals

  • While maintaining a high GPA, look into opportunities for research and relevant experience.  
  • Build relationships with professors as they may become letter writers.
  • Attend pre-health meetings and events. Begin to look into preparing for the PCAT (Studying and Registration). 
  • Continue to meet with your pre-health advisor at least once a semester. 

Clinical experience

Leadership and community service 

Grade point average

College year 3

Goals

  • Maintain a high GPA and stay involved with campus clubs/ organizations, volunteer opportunities, and experience.
  • Begin an internship and start prepping for the PCAT (take the PCAT by spring of Junior year).
  • Apply through PharmCas one year prior to when you plan to matriculate.

Timeline

January-February

Calculate your science and overall GPA to determine your competitiveness.

March-April

Begin collecting letters of recommendation.

May-June

Take PCAT no later than June.

July

PharmCAS opens.  Submit as soon as possible.

August-October

You may start receiving supplemental applications or be invited to interview during this time.

November-March

Deadlines to submit.

June

PharmCAS closes.

PCAT (Pharmacy College Admissions Test)   

Register for test date

Prep courses and practice exam

PharmCAS

Personal statement

  • PharmCAS Guidelines  
    • 4,500 characters long. 
    • Do not personalize your personal statement for particulate pharmacy programs, as PharmCas will submit the same essay to each program you apply to.

Letters of recommendation (LOR)  

  • Identify people who know you well and can firmly comment on your ability as a medical student and future physician. 
  • Ask in advance and give your letter writers sufficient time to complete and submit. 
  • Also, remember to stay in touch with letter writers who you may also ask in the future!
  • PharmCAS Guidelines
    • PharmCAS requires references to be submitted using the electronic reference system.  PharmCAS does not accept paper letters of reference.

Mock interviews

College year 4

Goals

  • Meet with pre-health advisor to prepare for interviews.
  • If waitlisted or rejected, explore post-bac options or consider taking a gap year.

International students

Non-traditional students

Pharmacy residency and internship options