Aspiring pharmacists attending Missouri University of Science and Technology can now participate in a new pathway to admission into St. Louis College of Pharmacy’s Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) program.
Dr. Robert Marley, provost and executive vice chancellor of academic affairs at Missouri S&T, and Dr. John Pieper, president of St. Louis College of Pharmacy (STLCOP), signed a memorandum of understanding between the University of Missouri Board of Curators on behalf of Missouri S&T and STLCOP on Monday, June 10, on the S&T campus in Rolla. The agreement establishes the terms of a pipeline program between the two nearly 150-year-old institutions that share prominent roles in the history of higher education in Missouri (S&T was founded in 1870 and STLCOP in 1864).
“We are delighted to be able to offer this admission pathway to our students interested in careers in the profession of pharmacy,” says Marley. “Based on the academic rigor and integrity of courses at both institutions, we consider this pipeline program to be mutually valuable to S&T students.”
Qualified students have the option of pursuing one of two paths to enter the Pharm.D. program. An accelerated option, called the “three-year plus four-year” path, allows them to gain early admission to the college and transfer credits from their first year in the Pharm.D. program back to S&T to complete their bachelor’s degree.
The traditional “four-year plus four-year” path allows students to complete their bachelor’s degree at S&T before matriculating to STLCOP. Students in the accelerated path must complete all general education requirements and as many hours toward the biological sciences major as possible before matriculating to STLCOP.
“Approximately two-thirds of our 250 biological sciences majors are interested in continuing their post-baccalaureate education, and half are interested in professional programs in health care,” says Dr. David Duvernell, chair and professor of biological sciences at Missouri S&T. In a 2018 survey of 143 S&T biological sciences majors, 12 were interested in pursuing a Pharm.D. after graduation, he adds.
Attending the signing ceremony from S&T with Marley and Duvernell were Dr. Stephen Roberts, vice provost and dean of the College of Arts, Sciences, and Business; Dr. Melanie Mormile, interim associate dean for research and external relations in the College of Arts, Sciences, and Business and professor of biological sciences; Dr. David Westenberg, associate professor of biological sciences; Brooke Durbin, acting vice provost and dean of enrollment management; and Tyler Johnson, assistant director of admissions.
Attending from STLCOP with Pieper were Dr. Brenda Gleason, assistant vice president of academic relations, executive associate dean for academic affairs and professor of pharmacy practice; Jill Gebke, director of admissions; and Dr. Courtney Ripetto, professional and transfer admissions specialist.
Behind Drs. Marley and Pieper are Dean Stephen Roberts, Dr. David Westenberg, Dr. David Duvernell, Dr. Melanie Mormile, Tyler Johnson and Brooke Durbin, from S&T; and from STLCOP, Dr. Brenda Gleason, Jill Gebke and Dr. Courtney Ripetto.
“We are thrilled to form this partnership with Missouri S&T,” says Gleason. “Missouri S&T is an institution built on a heritage of discovery, creativity and innovation, and we welcome this opportunity to provide S&T students with the chance to explore their interests in the profession of pharmacy. This collaboration offers amazing opportunities for students with a passion for health care, and we are excited for what’s to come.”