The Gamecock Pharmacy Assurance (GPA) Program consists of required didactic classes, laboratories, extracurricular activities, and out-of-the-classroom experiences. The structure of the program allows students to fully explore the profession of pharmacy, while strengthening knowledge and skills needed to be successful in the Doctor of Pharmacy Program.
GPA Program students are encouraged to engage in abundant opportunities that are offered at the College of Pharmacy and throughout the university campus to form lasting friendships and acclimate themselves to college life.
Didactic and Laboratory Curriculum
GPA students will complete 66 credit hours of pharmacy prerequisite courses in general chemistry, organic chemistry, physics, calculus, statistics, general biology, microbiology, English composition, English literature, public speaking, economics, psychology, human anatomy & physiology, and liberal arts electives.
These courses are taught at the undergraduate level by faculty in various colleges throughout the university. Course enrollment will include individuals from various majors thereby encouraging and promoting collaboration amongst a diverse student body.
Upon entering the Pharm.D. program, GPA students transition to professional Pharm.D. students and join a small cohort of around 100 students. Didactic courses expose students to skills in pharmacy mathematics, science of drugs, evidence-based treatment, and laws and regulations. Laboratories allow students to learn and practice skills necessary for various fields of pharmacy. Pharmacy practice experiences encourage students to investigate various fields of pharmacy through working alongside pharmacists and other healthcare professionals to provide hands-on, actual patient care. Almost one-third of the UofSC College of Pharmacy Pharm.D. curriculum is composed of pharmacy practice experiences.
In order to ensure preparedness for the rigors of the Pharm.D. curriculum and eventual practice in the profession of pharmacy, GPA students must complete the Pre-Pharmacy Education (PreParE) certificate requirements.
Components include, but are not limited to:
- Exposure to the pharmacy profession through shadowing, volunteering, or working in a pharmacy
- Required reading that culminates with critical thinking and discussion with current pharmacy students
- Training on research rules and policies
- Professional development workshops
- Active participation in the Carolina Association of Pre-Pharmacy Students (CAPPS)
- Community service
Pharmacy prerequisite courses will be completed at the University of South Carolina, Columbia campus over the first two undergraduate years of collegiate study. Co-curricular activities and components of the PreParE Program will be offered either on campus, online, or set up off campus near housing using UofSC College of Pharmacy resources.
Upon successfully completing pharmacy prerequisite courses, maintenance requirements, and the PreParE certificate, GPA students will enter the Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) program at the University of South Carolina.
The Pharm.D. Program occurs over an additional four years and includes a combination of didactic courses, pharmacy practice laboratories, and pharmacy practice experiences. Didactic courses and laboratories occur at the UofSC Columbia campus. Pharmacy practice experiences occur throughout the state, country, and world for realistic, hands-on training in multiple fields of pharmacy.