Discussion in 'Pharmacy School-Specific Discussions' started by futurpharmacis, 09.28.11.
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A crooked lawyer?!?! IMPOSSIBRU!!
I'm not saying that pharmacist should make an average salary after paying high tuition fees. I'm saying, be careful! The ones who are motivated by only money should chose a different career. Money could corrupt people in ways you can't imagine. If health care professionals are corrupted, it's terrible because of what could happen to people's lives. These people could be someone you know!
Now I'm not going to provide specific examples of corrupted healthcare professionals. I don't want to cause controversies on this forum. I want you to research and see for your self.
yah this is common. but anyways, whats everyone doing to kill time before they receive their offers?
feels good without having to do school or any tests or assignments =D
I still have one exam Thursday . CANNOT wait till it is over so then I will only have to worry about offers...
We had one biochem professor who is probably 70 years old. He can barely see the powerpoint screen and skips slides which he cant see. In his notes he uses the wrong protein names and continues to lecture wrong information on the slides until another student with some previous knowledge would point it out. Im not too sure what the new cirriculum is like but I know several students who arent happy with how the program is designed so its hard for me to comment on it since Im not part of the new program. But overall you are definitely not gettin an education that is worth $6000 more in value conpared to another university. On top of that there are other minor fees throughout the year and program that you are going to have to pay for ie signing up as pharmacy student with the college of ontario pharmacists (~$400). The ONLY thing I can give UofT credit for is their name, which MAY be a factor if you decide to work internationally or even for a pharmaceutical company. A lot of the major pharmaceutical company Canadian headquarters are based in Ontario. Hope that helps.
I also see a lot of posts on here about people havin friends with mediocre GPA and PCAT. On average people have generally a 80 composite and close to an 80 average. There FEW out of 240 students (maybe like 20-30) students who get in with a 70% average an 70 PCAT and an amazing interview score. Also keep in mind the number of applicants last year was VERY low, about almost 30-40% lower than usual, and the applicant pool was not as competitive as previous years. Generally speaking the interview is worth normally about 40% of your overall application and the Pcat from 10-20% and your average makes up for the rest.
This is true and there are lots of examples of students who say a prof sucks because they got a low grade. This is not me I got an 85 on the midterm, there are some really good profs who can lecture well at UofT. However my problem is when I pay 14,000 for an education and have a professor who publicly acknowledges to the class and says he has a fear of speakin to large crowds and says "uh.. Umm.. No wait I take back what I said" 5-8 times per sentence. He probably doesnt want to lecture and is only doing it as an obligation in order to do research. But when the school collects over 3 million dollars from the class the least they could do is care a little bit more about our education. This isnt undergrad with 4000 students in one faculty. This is a professional program with 240 students...
If you get into the program and drop me a line about the medchem and biochem professors were. I pretty much learned the course based on wikipedia and other primary sources.
I have a full time job for the summer. The days will fly by really quickly.
-->U of T reality guys!!!
What do you get for studying at a research intensive university? Profs who care more about their research than student's learning. Research is where profs get a lot money (and fame in their academic world). Do you see why money is not always such a good motivator? How many students are affected from poor teaching?
The same is true for U.S. universities and colleges. If you can, study at a university that will help you reach YOUR goal (hope it's not getting very rich).
So, you guys: given a choice, Waterloo or UofT?
im nervous. i have a 56 composite on my pcat LOL!
so.... i think i might get..
i think i did above average on the interview
hopefully get an acceptance. =)
got a friggan 60 in organic chem 2. so sad.
Just did my Waterloo interview, and I have to say I'm really hoping to get an offer from them. Heard a lot of really good things about the program from the pharmacy students, and I got the impression that it's quite supportive of its students. Don't think I did my best on the interview though The questions weren't too tricky but I failed to work in a couple of extra things I wanted to impress them with in some of the answers *sigh*.
I got the same impression. The only reason UofT has it going for them is the reputation and soon to be entry-level PharmD program being fully implemented.
Waterloo offers the co-op though, get experience and get paid. That in itself is already a very good thing.
The atmosphere at Waterloo seemed really positive and I really like their Pharmacy building haha its so nice! I do hope to get an offer from Waterloo as well....
And another thing about Waterloo is the co-op...seems really attractive
to be honest, CO-OP > PHARMD.
Who cares if u got bachelors vs. pharmD.
Canada only need bachelors to work.
Experience + Money > PharmD
loo 120 more attention vs UoFT 240 students
i didnt apply loo cuz i dont have all the prerequisites
but if i had the chance, i would accept loo or UBC or Dalhousie in nova scotia.
LOO because they give CO-OP.
DALSHOUSIE And UBC cuz its wayyyyyyy cheaper tuition.
sounds like you're trying hard to sell others on schools other than UofT
The gist of this guy's posts:
"I should just be a doctor, it's sooo much better...but it's hard"
"Pharm is just being a pill dispenser working a counter...I hope I get in even though I have no interest in the profession"
"The school I applied to is crap, if I had other prereqs or better marks or better PCAT scores I would have applied to other ones, but now I'm banking on UofT otherwise I'll be in the bottom of society"
Cool story bro. If you have so many reasons why pharma at UofT sucks, then you shouldn't have applied. Try for something you actually want.
Guys, please stop bashing on pharmacyboy. He obviously has a lot to learn. I wish something or someone will turn him around. He might have a lot of potential, right?
Anyone might be the person to discover the cure to cancer.
yah im still a pharmacyBoy, not a pharmacyMan, still long way to go =)
Assuming this is what you really want to do...=P
Go to waterloo. This university, the faculty, and especially the administration are a joke.
I just completed first year at UofT so i dont really care where anyone goes
Could you further explain why the administration is a joke?? LOL is it very easy to get in?
Pennefather has an aphasia. Chill the **** out.
yah i dont feel thats right. how can they ask us for 14000 and some guy doesnt even wana teach us. 14000 is not small money. thats like 14% of 100k salary, assuming u even make that much after taxes... *****!
UofT is a "hardcore" academic school, this shouldn't surprise anyone. Sometimes you'll get great profs, and other times you'll get terrible ones. You have to figure out how to deal with it either way. Newsflash people, but it's the same thing in the "real world." Life isn't fair, and nothing is given to you for free. I'm working full-time after graduating, and I'll just say that UofT definitely prepares you for all of the BS you have to deal with at a real job. Actually, real work is easier.
I did my undergrad at UofT, and I actually disliked the student community more than the academic side of the school. The Life Science programs were all filled with overly competitive, socially awkward people and there was no sense of camaraderie, it was all just one big competition to see who could kiss more butt and get into med school. I know I haven't done Pharmacy yet, but I'm hoping that the program is much more cohesive and more like it's own community. I'm expecting the academic part to be brutal, I just hope the student life is better than in undergrad.
Some people think they're such big shots when they make fun of Pennefather.
I think, truthfully, the people who complain the most about the curriculum or the administration are the ones who struggle the most. There're certain students in the class who don't take responsibility for their own failures, and instead load it all onto admin, and spend the most time making fun of professors for things they can't control - like illnesses or age. In any school there'll be administrative issues that arise.
Don't poo poo on other peoples' parades. Some people are truly hoping to attend U of T. It's partially a matter of personal opinion which program is "best".
LOL you're in for a treat if you think you'll be making 100k right off the bat...=)
do they care if we get 1 C grade?
Good luck to those having their MMI interviews coming up on May 12th
For those who may get both the UWaterloo and University of Toronto offers, and are seriously unsure of which program to choose, here's my insight to pre-1st year and 1st year in pharmacy:
Last year I got offers from both U of T and UWaterloo pharmacy programs. My cGPA was alright (definitely above the minimum, but not in the very high 3.0s). My PCAT composite was mid-80s, and I'm pretty sure I felt like I did well in most of the MMI stations. My UWaterloo written test was pretty good, but I felt like I screwed up the UWaterloo interview portion, because I finished the interview in 10 minutes, compared to a majority of the candidates who finished in 20-30 minutes. However, I still got an offer, so how long your interview lasted didn't influence your chances. (So for those who felt like they finished too early in the UW interview, don't fret too much! I had no props for the interview, but I had a really good speech about whatever topic I said I was passionate about.)
Initially I was leaning heavily towards accepting the UWaterloo offer, because I spent four years undergrad at U of T already, plus my brother (who graduated from UWaterloo engineering) lived near the campus. However, I realized that the pharmacy school was located in Kitchener (and not on the Waterloo campus itself), and my brother's residence was located in the opposite direction of the campus and pharmacy building, and would've taken me 1.5 hours to commute daily. Classes start very early there everyday, and I didn't want to travel for that long. In comparison, it takes me 20 minutes to commute via TTC subway from my home to U of T campus, at a relatively lower transportation cost. Also, I still would've had to contribute to monthly rent fees (among other fees) if I were to live in Waterloo. Co-op can only cover so much of the residence fees, in addition to the tuition. In my case, the co-op money earned would only cover the residence fees for the school year, and I would still have to get income elsewhere (either via OSAP, Line of Credit, etc.) to pay for the tuition itself. So cost played a major factor in my decision.
Reputation-wise, U of T is obviously more established with its pharmacy program, while UWaterloo had there first class graduate last year. So a lot of pharmacies (both retail and inpatient hospital) are not sure how well the UWaterloo graduates performed compared to UofT graduates. Based on what I've heard from various pharmacists, UWaterloo pharmacy students are essentially on par with UofT in how much knowledge and training they've got. Furthermore, UofT changed to a new curriculum in my year (class of 2015), which is partially based on UWaterloo's curriculum. So curriculum-wise, you can't go wrong with either programs, and if UofT is granted entry-level PharmD, it's very likely that UWaterloo's program will be upgraded shortly after.
In terms of the pharmacy buildings and their locations, both look very nice. Although Leslie Dan pharmacy building is bigger, most of the space is for researchers (including those from pharmaceutical sciences and pharmacology). Our lab computers are surprisingly slow and outdated (it really lags... which is a problem during practical labs), especially compared to the ones at UWaterloo. However, our building is conveniently located beside a subway station, and there's tons of places to eat (in addition to being able to study at any of the student and library buildings on the St.George campus). I've heard from some UWaterloo friends that there's not as big of a selection at the pharmacy building in Kitchener. This is a matter of preference, and I really didn't care if I was eating at the same place everyday or not.
Opportunity-wise, both offer exposure to actual practice, albeit in different ways. UWaterloo's distinguishing advantage are the co-op semesters throughout the program, where you get *paid* working opportunities at pharmacies. Most opportunities will be in the community, although there are students who decide to apply to inpatient pharmacies in Toronto or other urban settings. U of T's new curriculum offers two EPE semesters (both in summer: one after Year 1 and the second after Year 2), plus SPEP (which will now be the ENTIRE 4th year, rather than just for one semester). However, SPEP is non-paid, and EPE is usually non-paid as well (it's up to the preceptor and the pharmacies). For U of T students, it's relatively easier to get inpatient hospital pharmacy opportunities due to reputation and location, but UWaterloo students can still get these same opportunities.
In regards to my 1st year experience, for anyone who did undergrad at U of T, you pretty much know what to expect. Some professors and courses are hit-or-miss, and I agree with what previous users have posted. I'm sure UWaterloo has their own share of good/bad professors (who either love to teach, or clearly would prefer focusing on their own research). The timetable for UWaterloo looks more "packed", but unlike U of T, my UWaterloo friends said they have awesome practical labs for Anatomy and Physiology where they get to dissect cadavers, etc. (in comparison, our course-equivalents were purely lecture-based, with physiology being an online series of video lectures). I'm pretty sure both programs are very intense (especially 2nd semester at U of T), and the workload is high.
In terms of the student body, I felt like the U of T pharmacy class is very close-knit, despite being part of the massive St. George campus. Our class is pretty much a "bubble" that's separated from the other U of T students, and everyone helps each other out. Comparing the sense of community with the students in U of T pharmacy vs. U of T undergrad is like night and day. Being with the same classmates for the next 3 years probably helps UWaterloo pharmacy students are probably in the same situation, since their pharmacy building is located away from the main campus.
That's all I have to say for now... Hopefully some of you will find this useful when deciding between the two programs. Each has their pros and cons, although they do share many common features hahah..
Again, good luck to all the applicants for the 2016 (1T6) class. I look forward to seeing most (if not all) of you at U of T pharmacy I'll drop by the forum every now and then if anyone has any questions.
Not really. Your cGPA is looked at first, then the individual prerequisite course marks. MMI is worth significantly more than GPA and PCAT for the application. Some classmates did have 1 C grade among their pre-requisites and still got in. Just make sure your PCAT (80+) and MMI performance are good to make up for it.
Not sure about this year's cycle, but last year the minimum cGPA was 2.70, correct? So anyone near that would've had at least one 50-60s mark, and still got in. Then again, our year had an unusually low number of applicants (~600), so perhaps they were more lenient on the offers...
Thank you so much for such an informed post!! I really like it!
The thing that I really want to know is actually very difficult to answer. I have a high GPA and very high PCAT score but honestly I'm not really good at interviews. Do you feel like the interview worths more or the GPA? ps: I'm doing my interview this Sat :O:O:O Also, why do you think you did good on the interview? Do you have any strategies?
Thanks bteng for the super-informative post. Good to hear that the program is a tight-knit community! That's what I was hoping, and that's something I will really look forward to if I get accepted.
Just a random question for any of the current Pharm students: What happens if you get below 60 in one of the courses? I'm obviously not planning on failing anything, but I'm just curious what happens if someone does fail a course.
where can I get a copy of Dr Collins PCAT guide? it's not on Amazon...
Does anyone have any idea how many applicants there were this year?
the person who posted the complaint clearly said they got 85%, so they are not struggling. I don't think people who complain the most are the ones struggling or whatever. Sometimes they make legitamate claims. Besides, Canada is behind the world in terms of education. Don't you think it's time for Canadian Universities to improve?
why does everyone keep talking about GPA, they calculate it on an average dont they? GPA is much much different, its for med school and its more accurate measurement to see how much deviation most of your courses are away from each other.
I got an 83% uni avg. hope thats good enough. and i hope they dont look at pcat again... i really D- bombed it.
less than 46 days until offers are made. ahhh the stress. this summer hasnt really been relaxing.. just waiting and waiting... gosh.
You are definately right. I think part of the reason that some profs at UofT are not effective teachers is due to the fact that some students flatter their profs. Profs don't get accurate feedbacks. Those students who speak the truth are condemned because they are thought of being "rude" or "a problem themselves" relative to their flatterer counterparts. Not much gets done as a result.
There's no point in stressing out now dude. You've completed every part of the process that you had control over, so now it's out of your hands and it's a waste of time to stress about something that you can't control anymore.
Personally, I'm aware of the June 22 date and I have the program on my mind, but I'm not stressing about getting in because I know I did everything I possibly could. I did the pre-reqs, studied hard for the PCAT, and did my best on the interview....nothing left for me to do that can affect the decision, so nothing left to stress about The stress will come if I don't get in, but I'm just going to enjoy my summer until then.
I also agree, you need to stop stressing yourself out. Keep yourself busy, so you're distracted from thinking about it and lol, I only remember when the acceptances are being given out when I come to this forum.
I have my interview this Saturday Any last minute tips anyone would like to share, pleaseeee? I'm just scared of blabbering too much and not making sense or not knowing what to say.
I know exactly how you feel! I also have my interview this saturday and i am extremely nervous, specially about debating and working with someone else (the collaboration questions). Any tips from people who have gone through the interview or are preparing for it would be helpful, for example what steps did you take to prepare for your interview or any tips on how to calm down during the interview would be really appreciated! Again goodluck to everyone who has an upcoming interview =D
High GPA and PCAT is a big plus. However, interviews are worth quite a bit, but at least you don't have to worry about those two parts of the admission
Like people have said prior, be yourself at the interviews. I'm not sure if I'm allowed to discuss scenarios from prior year, so general strategy: Remember for most stations you need to first discuss all the choices/decisions/approaches that can occur, then narrow down your approach to a scenario based on whatever assumptions you talk about. Always justify your answer with your reasoning (e.g. "Based on all the things that can happen... If person A has X problem, I would advise person A to do ____ thing in order to complete ____ task/problem").
Also, don't feel pressured to go the entire 7 minutes per station. I usually took about 4-5 minutes talking, then the interviewer would ask prompt questions (which doesn't imply a loss of marks. So when interviewers give prompt questions, you're not getting deducted) to fill up the remaining time. BE CONCISE and JUSTIFY your responses. But when justifying, I strongly advise stating the condition/assumptions that led to your decision. E.g. "If the person has financial difficulties, I would advise him/her to do X. If the person is well off, then I would advise him/her to do Y.".
This type of approach shows you have considered multiple possibilities (including "black" and "white" choices, plus the "greys'), then based on various assumptions/conditions you decided to do X, because of ____. I think of it as an "upside-down triangle" method of answering the interview questions, because you go from large, diverse analysis to a narrowed, justified answer.
From what I've read and what I've been told by other classmates:
If you get <60 for the final mark of a course, you have to pay ~70 dollars to write a supplemental exam in summer (August I believe). The supplemental will be worth 100% of that course mark, and it will replace your original <60 grade. However, on the U of T transcript that course will be indicated that you have initially failed that course. Supplemental exams are supposed to be cumulative of the entire course material. In our year, Biochemistry was the course that people likely failed in, and maybe Pharmacology (2nd semester course, so marks not yet up until late May).
If I recall correctly, you can only fail a maximum of 2 courses (out of 12 courses in the entire schoolyear, both semesters combined), so 2 supplementals max. Also, your cGPA must be above 1.6 to proceed to 2nd year (getting <1.6 gpa pretty much implies failing many courses <60). Therefore, there's three ways you will be forced to repeat a year:
1. <1.6 cGPA (just to note, your cGPA RESTARTS when you start Year 1 pharmacy, so your undergrad cGPA is not part of the new cGPA. This is because you will be "enrolled in a new program", rather than resuming whatever undergraduate program you're currently in. So this might be a good thing for applicants who want a "fresh start" in their cGPA for post-pharmacy PhD/Masters/MD/etc. programs.) So at U of T, the cGPA they will calculate at end of 1st year pharmacy is ONLY based on the 12 courses you will be taking in pharmacy program.
2. Fail the supplemental(s). Even failing 1 supplemental will force you to re-do the entire first year (so you pass 11 of 12 courses, but fail the 12th course even after doing supplemental. This is actually similar to how U of T engineering program works).
3. Fail >2 courses in the schoolyear (Fall + Winter semesters combined).
I'm not sure if all of this is correct. Rather, this is what I've consistently heard from many classmates, so I'm assuming they're correct
Overall, it's pretty hard to fail a course. The only ones I've personally worried about were Biochemistry and Pharmacokinetics, because the final exams were worth about 60% of the final mark for each. I passed both well above the 60%. For the recently finished semester, Pathophysiology and Pharmacology worry me, again because the final exams were worth more than 50% of the final mark. Furthermore, all four of the mentioned courses had very high workloads. Others found Pharmacokinetics and pathophysiology to be easy, so it varies from student to student hahah... All the other courses were definitely possible to get >60%.
Thing is, at the end of every course, usually in the last lecture class, students have to fill out feedback forms. If a professor is incompetent at *teaching/communicating* their materials (even though they're clearly knowledgeable) to students, they will usually score very low on the feedback forms.
HOWEVER, at U of T, where academic research is prized, they don't get "fired" because 1. their research is highly desired, or 2. they have seniority.
I've known from other classmates and relatives that it can take even as long as 10 years of negative feedback from students to finally have a tenured professor removed from the course (not necessarily the department due to research prowess). Tenured/Senior professors are VERY HARD to fire, and this is unfortunate for students if a professor can't teach competently.
You shouldn't really worry about the collaboration stations. Both yourself and the other candidate want to succeed, and they won't go out of their way to screw you over. This is because BOTH of you will be graded, and the marking will be based on how well you communicate. It doesn't matter if you complete the task successfully in the 7 minutes. They want to know if you and your partner understand and can communicate effectively. Very, very few people actually finish the task for these stations, so don't feel horrible if you don't either.
Also, remember that you have 10-11 stations, and you can fail one of them and still have a very good chance of admission. They pretty much expect every candidate to mess up one station (usually the first station), since you may be unfamiliar with how it works at first. Also remember that every station is a "blank slate" since it's a different interviewer. So messing up the previous station won't make your next one look bad, since they don't know
Also, don't panic at the interviewers' facial expression. Although they state that every interviewer will have a neutral "poker" face, most can't help but give subtle expressions (or nods). It's a psychological thing
I do admit though, that those who do wear the neutral poker face may make you want to keep on talking the entire 7 minutes. If you finish before the 7 minutes, and the interviewer is writing down notes with a neutral expression, and you're just sitting there afterwards in awkward silence (no prompt questions given)... it's pretty intimidating. But do resist the temptation to talk further after you've already made your point (unless they give prompt questions).
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