Auburn’s Harrison School of Pharmacy

Auburn’s Harrison School of Pharmacy

October 17, 2019 1 By Stanley Isaacs


Welcome to Auburn University’s Harrison School
of Pharmacy. We are a trend-setting School of Pharmacy
in education, research and patient care. Our curriculum uses a team-based approach
to learning throughout the program. Student pharmacists belong to patient
care teams who have patient care responsibilities in the community throughout the entire curriculum. The knowledge and skills you gain as a student
pharmacist at Auburn will prepare you to become a practice-ready graduate. Our program is blessed with an outstanding
faculty and staff who are dedicated to preparing you to practice in any pharmacy practice setting
or research area. Let’s hear more about the school from those
who make it work day in and day out. We try to make our students life-long learners
through a team-process in our curriculum and it sets us apart. We have patient care that is initiated literally
in the second to third week you know of our curriculum. We have team-based learning that occurs throughout
our curriculum but especially currently in our third year with only eight students per class. So one thing that really attracted me to the
School of Pharmacy in terms of the experience the PharmD students have is the fact that
they have patient contact from day one so they don’t have to wait until their summer
rotations to get that first one-on-one patient contact. They actually have the opportunity to do that
throughout their entire time here and with the new curricular redesign we’re going to
have even more state of the art aspects of our curriculum, really innovative in terms
of the integrated learning experiences where these are going to be experiences that cross
disciplines and really allow students to work to apply what they learn, to real-life situations. It’ll be team-based, problem based, very state
of the art. PPE or Pharmacy Practice Experience is a program
where you are on a team and it’s about two people go see a patient at a time where
we get to talk to patients about their medications and kind of how they can take it better and
make suggestions for them to do better so that they can get the best care that they
can and get the better outcomes. All of the teams that you’ll be in, nine times
out of ten, you’ll be with your friends. All of them are going to be your friends. On top of that it’s very practical. There are very few settings in pharmacy that
you’ll go in to and you’re not working with a team. I know in a huge lecture format, it might
be daunting to kind of raise your voice, but in a team-based format you can easily speak
up, say your thoughts and ask questions. I think the Harrison School of Pharmacy prepares
you better than any other place because of the patient experience you get. I’m not nervous around my patients, you know. I feel very comfortable listening to them,
talking with them, counseling patients. Being able to go out into the community and
talk to patients, real-life patients not fake patients, that you know you’re in an exam
situation and you’re nervous but a real patient that you’re counseling them on their medications
is invaluable. As the coordinator for our orientation or
Foundations of Pharmacy course, I teach the first course they take in the school of Pharmacy
and I think the fact that stands out strongest to me is that these students are really the
elite among professional or college students. In order to be a great teacher, you have to
be a good researcher. It reflects really well in the classroom. When you go and talk about the expertise and
you have hands-on experience in the diseases that you’re talking about, that attracts the students to the research
that you do and it’s happening now. People listen to your lectures; know the in-depth
knowledge the professors have and then they approach them to continue their research in
their labs so having a strong research background is critical to be able to be a good teacher. Our faculty are dedicated to student pharmacist
success. They are strong clinicians and researchers
and many are national leaders. The thing that stands out to me most is the
accessibility and willingness of the faculty to spend time with you, teaching you things
that you may be struggling with. We’ve had professors that gave us out their
cell-phone numbers so we could call them at any time of night if we had a question when
we were trying to study. We’re training our pharmacists to be pharmacy
practitioners and provide expanded pharmaceutical care to our patients in the community setting
and any other setting such as hospitals or ambulatory care clinics or other settings. So our school is unique in that our department,
Health Outcomes, Research and Policy, is comprised of individuals who have similar expertise
but not necessarily overlapping expertise so we’re able to bring our different perspectives
together in the classroom, in teaching, of course, in research and even outreach so we
bring together experts is what we like to think of it as. The strengths of our department come down
to mostly neuropharmacology, we have a number of faculty doing neuropharmacology and physiology. We have strengths in cardiovascular disease. We also have investigators working in diabetes. My area of research is an emerging one at
Auburn with cancer therapeutics. So right now we’re covering the major disease
classes. But we are a very interdisciplinary group
and one of our strengths is the fact that we’ve got faculty looking at cancer but also
the cardiovascular toxicity associated with cancer treatments or looking at the neuro
toxicities associated with chemotherapy. At the Harrison School of Pharmacy we treat
you as a junior colleague. Our goal is to help you become a mature clinician
and a strong healthcare professional. I love that the pharmacy school is actually
on campus so it’s really convenient to get food, meet up with friends, go around campus. But it’s also awesome that the football stadium is
right next to the pharmacy school buildings so that’s, that’s really awesome. That was really attractive to me. When anyone asks me why I love Auburn, the
first thing I say is the sense of family. Our department has very much a strong sense
of family. We collaborate across other departments and
schools and make those connections that will last for a very long time. They wanted me to be here. They genuinely care about me and they wanted
to see me succeed at being a student pharmacist and then eventually being a pharmacist. The students that we’re looking for can be
summarized in basically three or four attributes. Certainly, they got to be academically qualified. We’re looking especially to the sciences. Secondly, we want to see what type of service
they have done. Thirdly we’re looking at their character,
especially the character of caring, of honesty, integrity. And lastly how well of a communicator are
they. Can they actually look people in the eye,
talk with them face-to-face, certainly about diseases and drug therapy in the future.