It is important you have an understanding of the field of pharmacy through experiences you have gained through student groups, volunteering or work experience. Admissions committees expect you to have researched the pharmacy profession and know some of the issues pharmacists currently face. Additionally, the admissions committee will want to know specifically why you are pursuing a career in the pharmacy profession.
As an undergraduate student, while it is impossible to gain experience as a pharmacist in the state of California because you must be licensed by the Pharmacy Board, students are encouraged to do the following to gain exposure to pharmacy and the healthcare field.
- Conduct an informational interview, shadow or observe a pharmacist.
- Search for pharmacists through pharmacy related professional organizations such as California Pharmacists Association (CPhA).
- Become involved in PILLS, Cal’s pre-pharmacy student organization
- Find healthcare related volunteer and internship opportunities:
- Look for a summer job as a Pharmacy Technician or Pharmacy Aide in a local pharmacy.
- To become a pharmacy technician, you may need to be certified. Check the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board.
Getting exposure to the pharmacy profession can make you a competitive applicant for pharmacy school and help you begin to identify what skills, values and interests you enjoy in this profession.