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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Balancing Life in Pharmacy School

I know what you are all thinking. What?! Can you really balance all the class assignments, exams, and have fun at the same time? Yes, I am the living testimony.

Prospective student:
Who is this guy?

Pharmacy Student:
Oh, my apologies.  My name is Patrick An - I am in my second semester and in my first year of 
Pharmacy School.

Prospective student:
Okay, but how can you balance everything?

I am not going to lie to you all.  Let’s talk, real talk:
Pharmacy school is not an easy. (Check mark, √)        Very important statement
Pharmacy school is going to be time consuming. (√)    Worth it
Pharmacy school is going to test your abilities. (√)       Be prepared, you will get it
Pharmacy school is fun. (√)                                        WHAT?!
The last point is an understatement. Pharmacy school can be fun. It depends what you make of it. Five days of the week, I am in school and the latest I ever gotten out was late afternoon. Where will I find that time to study and have fun? Simple, study throughout the week and spend the weekend to go out. I am sure at least one of you has heard of the term ‘time management’ back since grade school, right? It will help you take on a different perspective and keep you consistent on the tasks at hand. Again, it is all up to you.

Prospective student:
Can you give me an Example?

Oh, sure! Recently, I have participated in an event called Color Me Rad. I believe it was
on a Saturday and it was located at the heart of University of South Carolina. I could not
have asked for any better timing or location. Anyway, Color Me Rad is a 5k running
event and the donations will fund the local program called Happy Wheels. The program
helps local children hospitals by rolling a cart filled with toys and books and each child
can pick up one item from the cart. The running event is not only helping with the
program, but also helps us with our personal health. I know, I needed to get back into
shape, but I digress.

Prospective student:
Can you give me another Example related to Pharmacy?

Of course! I am part of the Student National Pharmacy Association (SNPhA) and I was
given an opportunity to be a part of their fall event called SNPhA’s 1st Annual Open
Mic / Self Expression Night. I helped with the Audio and Visual. The crowd came from
the local community, students of Presbyterian College, and pharmacy students. The
participants for the talents acts mostly consisted of pharmacy students and a few
undergraduates from the main Presbyterian College campus. In between the acts the
SNPhA, they provided interesting facts about HIV/ AIDs awareness. The event was fun
and informative. It was a great turnout from the crowd and there were amazing talents,
especially from the pharmacy students.

Prospective student:
Okay, but… Were there any exams or assignments around the event?

Yes and no. The event date was perfect. Yes, I had all my exams and assignments were
done prior to the running event. No, the best part was that in the following week there
were not exams or homework. I was in the clear, but I had to do a little extra. What I did
leading to the event were reviewed the next set of classes for the next day, did things
ahead of time by studying during lunch breaks, and made time toward the evening to
review the materials, and the list goes on and on. There is always time, but it is what you
make of it.

The bottom line is all things are possible but it will be key to manage your time and priorities when coming into an institution that is highly looked up to. This is a professional program that is student-focused and provides the best resources for you to become a successful well-rounded pharmacist. At the same time, it is good to learn to balance fun into the mix because I don’t think anyone wants to burnout.

Pharmacy School is going to require you to become more than a pharmacist, but an ‘overall’ better individual to serve our communities and our profession. Presbyterian College School of Pharmacy is equipped and able to put that all on the table, just for you.

The Presbyterian College motto is While we live, we serve and our pharmacy school extended that motto into Care for the Community.

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