One of the goals of the Kennedy Pharmacy Innovation Center is to provide opportunities for students to learn about entrepreneurial and non-traditional roles in pharmacy. As executive director for KPIC, Patti Fabel understands the need to demonstrate to students that 21st century pharmacy offers an unprecedented range of opportunities for those with the drive and commitment to make a difference.
“Our annual Career Summit provides the chance to explore non-traditional pharmacy career options, gain advice for pursuing similar career paths, and to expand their professional network to include individuals from across the country,” Fabel says.
The fourth annual and second virtual event featured guest speakers from a variety of professions including public health, policy development and pharmaceutical industry.
In the ever-evolving pharmacy environment, it is incredibly important for students to be exposed to emerging and innovative roles for pharmacists.
Amanda Isac, Pharm.D. Pharmacist, North Carolina Division of Public Health
Speaker and COP alumna Amanda Isac, 2017 Pharm.D., is now a pharmacist for the Injury and Violence Prevention Branch of the North Carlina Division of Public Health.
“In the ever-evolving pharmacy environment, it is incredibly important for students to be exposed to emerging and innovative roles for pharmacists,” she says. “It was a privilege to be able to participate in the KPIC Career Summit and share how my experiences, beginning with those I gained as a student at UofSC, paved the way for my current role.”
Other speakers included COP alumnus Sam McCallum, 2018 Pharm.D., associate director for Genentech, Inc; Nimit Jindal, ACCP/ASHP Virginia Commonwealth University Congressional Health Care Policy Fellow, serving on the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee; Mark Pilkington, vice president of managed care of drug technology pharmacy solutions for AmerisourceBergen; Sally Rafie, birth control pharmacist; and Helen Sairany, CEO of the South Carolina Pharmacy Association
Kathrine Lollis, Class of 2025, found the summit valuable to her when she first attended as an undergraduate and decided to continue participating in the summit.
“I gained a large amount of knowledge on pharmaceutical careers that are not normally discussed in class settings,” she says.
Sailor Coutermarsh is a prepharmacy student and wanted to learn more about the different fields available.
“There is such a range of career options, from community pharmacy to working overseas with Doctors Without Borders,” Coutermarsh says. “I loved hearing the perspectives from several pharmacists and their careers within pharmacy.”
Fay Hussain, Class of 2024, wanted to be inspired by pharmacists who carved a space for themselves in non-traditional areas.
“I have gained a broader perspective of what I, too, could do with my Pharm.D. degree, anywhere from public policy to advocacy in a specific area,” she says. “My attendance has empowered me with the belief that I am able to create a space for myself in any area I like with transferrable skills after graduation.”
For José Bonilla, Class of 2023, the summit opened his mind to more opportunities as a future pharmacist.
“The skills we acquire during pharmacy school are amazing and people need to understand that we can do more than just a pharmacist’s job,” he says. “From pharmaceutical companies to members of Congress, there is nowhere to go but up for the pharmacy industry.”