It is my pleasure to welcome you as new P1 student pharmacists and as members of our Longhorn pharmacy family. You are entering The University of Texas at Austin Doctor of Pharmacy program because you are among the best. You have proven that you can achieve academically, and you have excelled in a variety of nonacademic endeavors that are indicators of your future success. We are both pleased and proud that you have chosen UT to pursue your pharmacy education.
You are entering as student pharmacists in one of the truly premier colleges of pharmacy. We are recognized for exemplary Pharm.D. and graduate education, for our outstanding faculty, for exceptional post-Pharm.D. residency programs, for cutting edge research, and for service to the profession and the community. Our 2016 NAPLEX pass rate for first time examination was 96.6% compared with a state pass rate average of 85.1% and a national average of 85%. Our 2017 graduating Pharm.D. class had 39 individuals successfully match for PGY-1 residency positions, with an excellent 71% match success rate – above the national average.
You will be challenged to master a rigorous academic program in which the Pharmacist Patient Care Process is integrated throughout the curriculum. Over the next four years, you will be expected to successfully complete demanding courses in the biomedical and pharmaceutical sciences, integrated pharmacotherapy modules, and the social, management, and economic sciences. Last year we redesigned the anatomy, physiology, pathophysiology, and pharmacodynamics coursework taught during the P1 year so that you will be completing a two semester, integrated approach to mastering this material. We are currently redesigning our 3-semester pharmacotherapy module sequence so it is appropriately aligned with the new physiology/pathophysiology sequence. Beginning with a new NSO “boot camp”, you will experience a new approach to learning communication skills, which is being taught in collaboration with the Institute for Health Communications in the Moody College of Communications. You will learn how to effectively communicate with patients and other health care professionals. You will be expected to solve patient care problems that address patients’ medication management needs. You will develop fundamental patient care skills such as patient assessment, and you will complete certifications in CPR, immunizations, IV admixtures, and medication therapy management. During the first three years of pharmacy school, you will complete more hours of practice based learning experiences than in the 124-year history of the college. These experiences will culminate in a 42-week sequence of P4 rotations during which you will be expected to demonstrate your competence in performing pharmacist skills.
You will complete interprofessional education (IPE) experiences with UT students from medicine, nursing, and social work. Your IPE will be incorporated into an expanded and revised Foundations of Professional Development (FPD) series. Our goal is to produce leaders, innovators, and entrepreneurs for healthcare and the profession of pharmacy. Becoming a professional and a leader does not occur automatically; it must be cultivated and nurtured. You will learn what it means to be a professional, how your professional identity differs from your personal identity, and how your professional identity relates with that of other health professionals. Positive leadership begins with learning and then practicing the virtues that underlie great leadership. We will provide you with the opportunity to develop these attributes.
You are entering an exciting profession – one with a myriad of career opportunities. Your FPD sequence will assist you in evaluating the many available career opportunities within pharmacy. Our goal is for you to develop a unique set of skills and experiences that will differentiate you from other pharmacy graduates. While we will provide you with the opportunities, it is your responsibility to develop yourself professionally. Your personal professional development is important regardless of the career path that you decide to pursue. You must begin that development today.
We are here to assist you in any manner that we can. I wish you the best as you pursue your pharmacy education at The University of Texas College of Pharmacy. Approach each day with vigor and a positive attitude. Work hard, become actively involved, and remember…
“What starts here changes the world!”
James T. Doluisio Regents Chair and Behrens Centennial Professor of Pharmacy