Pharmacy Students Told they are 'The Future of Healthcare'
Sixty-five Hampton University School of Pharmacy students were part of the school’s ninth annual white coat ceremony Sept. 24 in Ogden Hall. The ceremony is for first-year pharmacy students, and offers students a sense of the school’s core values that focus on professionalism, respect, integrity and caring. During the ceremony, students recite a pledge of professionalism committing their professional careers and practices to excellence in pharmacy, and are given white pharmacy coats.
The keynote speaker was Ami Bhatt, Pharm. D., senior manager of health and wellness recruiting for Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. nationwide. Bhatt encouraged students to embrace their commitment to the pharmacy profession.
“Pharmacists are respected members of the community,” she said. “When you take this oath today, you’ll be putting the needs of others before your own.”
The HU School of Pharmacy offers an entry-level, professional program leading to the Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) degree. The program requires six years for completion. The first two years of the program consists of pre-professional pharmacy education, followed by four years of professional pharmacy education. Corinne Ramaley is the school’s dean.
Erica Gooch Pharm. D. ’06 was the program’s reflections speaker. Gooch is currently a pharmacovigilance scientist for benefit risk management, a division of Johnson and Johnson Pharmaceutical Research and Development in Horsham, Pa.
Kingsley Madu donned his white coat during the ceremony. From the program, he got a good sense of what his profession will entail once he leaves HU.
“Much of the speeches focused on responsibility and seriousness, and respect and professionalism,” he said.
Madu, 20, and the other students in the ceremony are slated for the class of 2013. Part of the professionalism pledge they recited declares, “These high ideals are necessary to ensure the quality of care extended to patients I serve.”
Bhatt gave similar advice.
“Dream big,” she said, “as you are the future of healthcare.”