Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD)
College of Pharmacy
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Our PharmD program is designed to prepare you for a variety of pharmacy career paths including research, industry, public health, hospitals, academia and community pharmacy, to name just a few. Our small class size provides more opportunities for individualized mentorship from our practitioner faculty.
COP’s experiential curriculum puts students into healthcare settings early in their training, giving them even more time to learn by doing. This intensive preparation is the foundation upon which students build toward successful careers in pharmacy, as evidenced by our high first-time pass rates on the North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination (NAPLEX). As of 2021, COP ranks second among Illinois PharmD programs for NAPLEX pass rates.
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While residency is not required for licensure as a pharmacist, more COP students each year are choosing to expand their career opportunities by pursuing specialized postgraduate training in areas such as emergency medicine and community pharmacy practice. Meet a recent COP graduate who matched with a pharmacy practice residency at a VA hospital in Milwaukee. Also, check out our faculty-produced HelixTalk podcast, including a recent interview with a COP graduate who is launching her own independent pharmacy.
In addition to academics, COP students are active in a wide range of student organizations that emphasize leadership and service. Our chapter of the Student National Pharmaceutical Association presented a pharmacy career exploration program this spring to the Ladies of Virtue, a Chicago-based mentoring and leadership program for girls ages 9–18 from underserved communities. Several COP students have also held leadership positions on RFU’s Executive Student Council and have served as a student representative on the university’s President’s Cabinet.
Pharmacy students interested in research opportunities are paired with a faculty mentor and can join their mentor’s research project, or develop one of their own. COP students also gain valuable experience presenting their research findings at industry conferences and RFU’s annual All School Research Consortium.