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A Career in the Pharmaceutical Field                   01/08/2004

by: N. S.

Even before the horrific tragedy on September 11, I have had a keen interest in pursuing a career in biological sciences. When my classmates and I were given an opportunity to read a book of our choice for a Biology report, I chose The Hot Zone. The book describes how an airborne disease travels through the atmosphere killing countless number of individuals before finally being contained. This sort of story excites me because I desire to be at the forefront of pharmaceutical research where I envision myself making a difference in people's lives, whether it be in containing a deadly microbiological agent or helping create a new vaccine or drug which saves lives.

My goal may seem like a daunting task, but I believe I can achieve whatever I put my mind to because I have always been a hard-working and inquisitive leader. For example as the President and C-founder of Electronics' club at James B. Conant High School, I helped other fellow students design and build circuits. Even though many individuals can memorize equations like Ohm's Law for current, I=V/R, I like to understand the theory from a fundamental level and then build it back up and apply this concept to solving the more practical problem. With this sort of thinking, I believe I can excel in the biological sciences and accomplish my goal.

Another leadership role that I played was as chairman of our school blood drive. I worked tirelessly to encourage fellow students as well as faculty members to donate the "gift of life." Because of the success of the blood drive, the executive board and its advisors unanimously voted me to receive the Student Council Member of the Month award for my dedication, diligence, and hard work. Not only do I have an interest in the biological sciences but also a passion for helping others, whether it is in volunteering at the local hospital r tutoring students at a local school. A love for the biological sciences and a desire to help people are the major motivations for me in pursuing a career in the pharmaceutical field. Although the pharmaceutical profession can entail filling prescriptions at the local pharmacy, I envision myself being involved in an industry where I can make a difference in arenas such as vaccine development, pharmaceutical research, and bioterrorism.

As a student of Drake University, College of Pharmacy I know I am at the forefront of medical and pharmaceutical sciences. I would like to pursue research opportunities on new medicines that will help cure diseases not only for our society but world community at large. This goal may seem daunting but with my strong interest for research work coupled with hard work, perseverance, and positive attitude, I believe I can accomplish it and make a difference. As I continue to strive towards my career aspirations, my first step is to receive my Doctorate in Pharmacy.


RxLink  LLC


From : Winston-Salem State University

Why I decided to pursue pharmacy school?  S.W.

I selected pharmacy school because I felt this choice was best suited for me as an individual along with providing a career in which I could develop allowing my strengths to flourish.  I have always had a peaceful, amiable and servant-minded heart eager to share with individuals.  While growing up I have always wanted to assist people in any way possible.  In middle and high school my greatest area of interest of was science so I realized upon entering college I would major in the sciences.  Late into my junior year of college, I accepted a position as a pharmacy technician in a local pharmacy.  This pharmacist took me under his wing providing me an opportunity to learn and observe various aspects of medicine/pharmacy differing from standard classroom instruction.  In addition, working in that pharmacy provided valuable comprehensive knowledge about the industry of pharmacy while yielding a holistic approach of understanding drugs and their actions.  This job peaked my interest by intriguing me beyond merely knowing drug names but understanding more about them.  His passion and interest for his profession left an indelible influence on my life.  Unbeknownst to him, he had planted the seed in me for pharmacy practice.

As a pharmacist I will solely commit to educating patients about their medications and working with clinicians to promote effective use of drugs.  With unprecedented advances in medicine/ drug discovery linked together with exciting new interdisciplinary approaches to scientific discovery, the roles of pharmacists have become more comprehensive.  Being a pharmacist is not just being a "dispenser of drugs"as times have progressed to bringing to surface a new class of pharmacists.  Pharmacists are now making drug therapy decisions, selecting medications for patients, providing expert drug information, monitoring and assessing patient adherence and compliance, taking active roles in prevention and wellness, assessing drug therapy treatment outcomes and a host of other provisions.  I am confident in my abilities to perform as a well-trained pharmacist.  With this acceptance I have asked critical questions of my matriculation process.  Can I permit myself to enter into the private world of my patients, explore their feelings and concerns without judging them or succumbing to partiality/bias and in some significant and ethical way respond in a manner assuring them that I have listened while seeking to provide the necessary assistance and comfort I possibly can?  Can I see person as unique in his/her reaction to illness and disease?  Can I see what is different and similar about this person so that any insight or assistance I may provide is the most useful and beneficial to my patients needs?  Upon asking these questions of myself, my answers remain perpetual and consistently yes.  I chased a dream which produced a vision which yielded a path of direction and now today I stand-a third year pharmacy student.


To: RxLink

"What contribution will I make to my profession when I graduate?"       12/17/04

From: C Q

Washington State University

PharmD candidate 2006

My contribution to my future profession is a gift that stems from my family and my experience from different pharmacy related fields. The experience began three years ago when pharmacy school began to challenge and expand my horizons. When I first entertained the idea of applying to pharmacy school I was a technician at a local independent retail/compounding/infusion pharmacy. After working there for only a few months, I realized the massive potential that the career held. My store not only consisted of retail and compounded bio-identical hormones; they had cornered every pharmacy related niche including: durable medical equipment, oxygen therapies, CPAP and BIPAP therapies, and motorized wheelchairs. I realized that t there was a whole lot more to pharmacy than counting pills by five and counseling on antibiotics. I soon took a pharmacology class at the local university to augment my pharmacy interest; I began applying to pharmacy schools and was soon accepted at Washington State University. The first summer back from school I immediately found a job at the local hospital learning about the acute care setting. I went on rounds with pharmacists and learned even more about the diverse roles of a clinical pharmacist. I interacted with patients and learned about specific drug related protocols. In one specific case I was running an errand in the hospital and this man approached me. He was contemplating suicide and needed to talk to someone. I asked my supervisor if I could take my break early. I bought the man a candy bar and simply listened to him and his story. That day I realized the importance of becoming a healthcare professional.

The second year of school was exciting. The classes became more saturated with useful and practical knowledge. January of that year I had applied for an internship at Biogen-idec Inc. Spring came soon enough and finals were just around the corner, I didn't think I would hear from Biogen-idec but sure enough the phone rang. The lady said, "I am offering you the internship, how would you like to work in Cambridge:. I was enthused about the job and immediately thought about working in England! After talking to the lady from Biogen-idec she informed me that there job was not at their UK site, but rather in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Nonetheless, I was still excited and within a week after finals my bags were packed and I traveled 3,000 miles away to Cambridge. I was eager to learn about the pharmaceutical industry. I reported tot he Regulatory Affairs department and I was handed a number of projects to accomplish and present before the summers end. I went through training on the drug development process from discovery to FDA approval. I learned the ins and outs of the companies' drugs and what the extensive regulations were when developing a drug. Our group worked on the drug Tysabri, also then known as Antigen. It was undergoing phase III trials at the time and it was very exciting times for the company and the world of Multiple Sclerosis. As of today the FDA has approved Tysabri and it will soon begin to reshape the current therapy for Multiple Sclerosis.

After my fascinating and educational summer, my brother was unfortunately diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. The news impacted our family and we naturally formed a support network to embrace the impact of the illness. In many ways it has made our family grow stronger. Professionally, it also helped me grow as now I can better appreciate and relate to the impact of disease on a more personal level. My brother will be one of the first patients in our area to receive Tysabri. He will receive the drug at the infusion center I once worked for.

The beginning of my third year in pharmacy school I looked at my career path with a whole new light. I decided to volunteer at the Spokane hospice. I have been assigned to a patient and help out whenever I am available. I also make pharmacy recommendations with the guidance of a hospice nurse on general health and wellness. My peers and even my professors were skeptical of my new outlook on volunteering and always wondered what was influencing me. I respond to these people, "I do it, simply because I care and have the ability to help out".

I have realized through my experience what the great potential and rewards this career has to offer. One of the greatest rewards, however, comes from the satisfaction received from caring, My pharmacy experience has taught me that whatever pharmacy setting I choose I can make a difference by caring. When I graduate and become a pharmacist I will continue to care for my patients in the same fashion as I do for my brother and family. Hopefully others, including my fellow colleagues, will realize their greater potential and together we will enhance the care-giving potential of our profession. Caring, in my eyes, makes us better people and is the greatest powerful contribution anyone can make.


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