The Pre-Pharmacy Program serves students from any major who are interested in pursuing a career in pharmacy. The program ensures that students have access to the courses they need (over a 4 year time period) to meet their pre-professional requirements as well as providing support and guidance along the way.
Individual, Supportive Education
Many of our graduates have had remarkable success in applying to pharmacy school, largely due to our supportive environment and individualized approach to education. Most of the upper-level science courses you take will have no more than 20 students, so you and your professors will get to know each other well. Most of our introductory science courses have fewer than 30 students. Our labs that accompany courses have faculty as instructors and fewer than 16 students. We encourage you to get involved with the Pre-Health Professions Club as early as possible, so you can take advantage of events and activities, and gain a sense of belonging to Maryville’s Pre-Health Professions community.
Dedicated, Comprehensive Advising
Maryville students planning to apply to medical school are guided in their preparation by the Pre-Health Professions advisor and the Pre-Health Professions Advisory Committee. The Advisory Committee usually consists of the Pre-Health Advisor, three additional science faculty members spanning the disciplines, a Psychology faculty member, an English faculty member, and someone with a degree in the health professions. The Advisory Committee offers students:
- Information about pharmacy colleges and careers
- Introduction to admissions requirements for pharmacy schools
- The opportunity to conduct undergraduate research
- Assistance identifying shadowing and volunteer opportunities
- Evaluation of whether your course mix, GPA, and PCAT scores are competitive for schools you’re considering
- Letters of recommendation to pharmacy schools
- Help preparing for admissions interviews
We encourage you to make an initial appointment with the Pre-Health advisor during your first semester at Maryville to make sure that the process of applying to medical school isn’t overwhelming.
Sophomore Review Process
During the spring semester of the sophomore year, students are invited to go through a sophomore review process. Students assemble an application with materials similar to those required for medical school admission. The Pre-Health Professions Advisory Committee will review the students’ applications and conduct formal interviews with all applicants. Students going through the sophomore review process will receive feedback from the committee with recommendations for strengthening their application before the start of their junior year.
This process, during the sophomore year, allows us to provide feedback to students on ways to strengthen their application materials, life-experiences, academic success and course selection, etc. while they still have time to make the improvements—prior to application to medical school.
While no one major is prescribed for admission to pharmacy school, you should build a strong foundation in biological and natural sciences. That doesn’t mean that you’re tied to a science major, though. Liberal arts majors that develop analytical reading, writing and critical thinking abilities can have very competitive applications for pharmacy school.
Regardless of the major you choose, your course load should be challenging and well-rounded. We also strongly recommend volunteering at a local pharmacy or clinic to gain practical experience and exposure to the profession. The ideal pharmacist has an in-depth and up-to-date knowledge of medicine, understands the nuances of society, and can communicate well.
Pharmacy schools give preference to applicants who complete a rigorous course of study and demonstrate academic excellence in all course work, particularly the core biology, chemistry and physics courses. Applicants must also provide competitive admissions test scores and should be able to demonstrate a long-term, growing commitment to serving others. As an active participant in the Pre-Pharmacy Program, you will learn to balance a rigorous academic schedule with meaningful extracurricular activities.
There is no universal curriculum recommended for pharmacy school applicants, but most pharmacy schools want to see that you’ve completed the following courses:
- One year of General Biology
- One year of General Chemistry
- One year of Organic Chemistry
- Physics I & II
- Two semesters of English
- Psychology and/or Sociology
- Additional electives to total a minimum of 60 credits by the time of application
AP credit in the sciences should be supplemented with upper level course work. Some pharmacy schools have requirements not listed here, so don’t wait until it’s too late to determine specifically what classes you should take.
The Pharmacy College Application Service (PharmCas, www.pharmcas.org) details the specific requirements for application to pharmacy schools. We strongly suggest that all prospective applicants take a look at this resource.
Maryville has a number of articulation agreements within the health professions including:
- 3+4 Podiatry Degree with Ohio College of Podiatric Medicine
- 4+4 or 3+4 Optometry Degree with UMSL
- 4+4 or 3+4 Osteopathic Physician Degree with Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine (LECOM),
- 4+4 Dental Medicine Degree with LECOM
- 2+3, 3+3 or 4+3 Pharmacist Degree with LECOM, http://lecom.edu/academics/school-of-pharmacy/
- 3+3 Doctor of Chiropractic Program with Logan College of Chiropractic
Pharmacists work in hospitals, clinics, retail drug stores, and some long-term care facilities, but there are other areas in pharmacy where pharmacists are needed. Researchers work to develop new treatments and cures for illnesses, disorders and diseases. Academic pharmacists share their skills and knowledge with students.
While we typically recommend majoring in biochemistry, biology, or chemistry. You may select another major of your choice. Pre-Pharmacy is a program of study, not a major at Maryville University.
If you’re interested in joining our Pre-Pharmacy program, you need to meet the general admissions requirements for the University. Specific course requirements will be defined by the major you choose.