Beginning next year, the Pharmacy School will be enrolling incoming freshman students directly into the Pharmacy School as they are admitted into the pharmacy studies program. This marks a welcome change for the school. Now undergraduates in the program no longer have to say, “Oh, well technically I’m pre-pharm.”
This has a measurable benefit in reducing needless bureaucracy. Yes, students still must apply to the professional program in their second year. But they no longer have to take the standardized test for pharmacy school, the Pharmacy College Admission Test.
This is a much-needed change. The whole point of the pharmacy studies major is so the University of Connecticut can give students the knowledge they need for pharmacy school. Hopefully, this means they would believe a student in good standing in the program would be ready. It’s a sign of belief in their own program. Now, the pharmacy school is in line with other graduate programs at UConn, many of which do not require things like Graduate Record Exams if the student is coming for UConn. In a time where standardized testing bears down on students from childhood to adulthood, lessening that strain in any way helps.
More abstractly, this change helps pharmacy students with self-actualization. The Pharmacy School is now telling admitted students from the start that they believe in them. On the students’ side, they now get to claim some sort of pride in their program from the start, no strings attached. Perhaps this sounds silly, but this change will give some subtle confidence to pharmacy studies majors. In the same way that School of Engineering students want to call themselves engineers, or how pre-med students wish to call themselves students in medicine, pharmacy students want to see themselves as pharmacists-in-training.
In undergraduate studies, we are still stuck in a sort of incubation process. Our life is on hold as we study full-time towards a shot at a better quality of life. If students have a goal in mind for after — be it a job or graduate studies — that is often where their mind is at. There is no harm in letting students work toward this.
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