20YearsOfSnow

10+ Year Member
May 20, 2008
42
0
0
Detroit/Cleveland
Status
Pre-Pharmacy
I'm trying to finalize my school list, and I'm just looking for advice about schools I might have missed, or schools that might not be a good match. I'd sincerely appreciate any advice!

Some info about me:
3.4ish GPA, 99th percentile composite PCAT, MI residency, no pharmacy experience, extensive molecular bio research experience including working on a paper this summer as first author, varsity swimmer for 2.5 years.
Attending CWRU, earning a Biology B.S. and Chemistry B.A. w/ a psych minor.

I'm aiming for dual-degree programs, with a PhD in an area like Pharmacology or Pharmaceutical Sciences. I'll be taking the GRE this summer, and I expect a good score. I also plan to be upfront about my career plans for industry or possibly academic work. I feel like my passion for research and pharmacy will come across in my personal statement, interviews, etc.


Definitely applying to:
University of Michigan
Ohio State University
University of Illinois - Chicago
University of Washington

Heavily considering:
University of Minnesota
SUNY Buffalo
University of North Carolina
Purdue
University of Maryland
South Carolina
Mercer
UCSD or UCSF

(I know UNC and UMinn don't have dual degree programs, but they are heavily research oriented, which still appeals to me, especially if I'm not accepted into any PharmD/PhD programs.)


I understand that PharmD/PhD programs are very competitive, and I'm not sure how many schools I should apply to, especially since it will be a very expensive process.

Once again, any advice at all would be greatly appreciated. Thank you so much for taking the time to read this!
 

FarscapeGirl

10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Jul 31, 2007
783
1
0
Status
Pharmacy Student
So I came to the University of Washington as a grad student in molecular and cellular biology, just got a PhD last year, and am now in the PharmD program. I switched because I wasn't the hugest fan of research (although the research opportunities are really good here), and I wanted a more clinical role in my career.

My question is why you're doing the dual degree/pharmacy aspect. Why not just do a PhD? If you're going to work in industry or academia, do you need the PharmD? What's the motivation, especially with no pharmacy experience?

I like my career choice, but it's been a bit of a hard switch to pharmacy in some ways. Some of the classes are more fluffy than grad school classes, although that changes after the first year, apparently. As a pharmacy student, you'll need to be working in pharmacies, learning about business, learning about cultural sensitivity, etc. that you wouldn't need to do in grad school.

You'll also end up with a lot more debt. Pharmacists make good money, but those in academia not as much. Industry is a good salary, but you can get laid off a lot. You'll be about $100,000 in debt after finishing school, but with just a PhD program, you'll be getting a stipend and probably nothing but maybe a few thousand in credit card debt, depending how frugally you live and if you have any emergencies. Are you planning to moonlight at a retail pharmacy a couple times a month for some extra cash?
 

Monalyce

PharmD-to-be in 2013!
10+ Year Member
Mar 28, 2009
347
0
0
Minneapolis, MN
Status
Pharmacy Student
Do consider the straight up PhD. I personally think the PharmD/PhD is less beneficial that it sounds.
 
Sep 27, 2009
152
0
0
Status
Pharmacy Student
I'm trying to finalize my school list, and I'm just looking for advice about schools I might have missed, or schools that might not be a good match. I'd sincerely appreciate any advice!

Some info about me:
3.4ish GPA, 99th percentile composite PCAT, MI residency, no pharmacy experience, extensive molecular bio research experience including working on a paper this summer as first author, varsity swimmer for 2.5 years.
Attending CWRU, earning a Biology B.S. and Chemistry B.A. w/ a psych minor.

I'm aiming for dual-degree programs, with a PhD in an area like Pharmacology or Pharmaceutical Sciences. I'll be taking the GRE this summer, and I expect a good score. I also plan to be upfront about my career plans for industry or possibly academic work. I feel like my passion for research and pharmacy will come across in my personal statement, interviews, etc.


Definitely applying to:
University of Michigan
Ohio State University
University of Illinois - Chicago
University of Washington

Heavily considering:
University of Minnesota
SUNY Buffalo
University of North Carolina
Purdue
University of Maryland
South Carolina
Mercer
UCSD or UCSF

(I know UNC and UMinn don't have dual degree programs, but they are heavily research oriented, which still appeals to me, especially if I'm not accepted into any PharmD/PhD programs.)


I understand that PharmD/PhD programs are very competitive, and I'm not sure how many schools I should apply to, especially since it will be a very expensive process.

Once again, any advice at all would be greatly appreciated. Thank you so much for taking the time to read this!
How come Wayne State isn't on the list? they offer a PharmD/PHD program
 

Praziquantel86

Moderator Emeritus
10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Oct 28, 2008
2,572
40
161
Status
Fellow [Any Field]
I'm trying to finalize my school list, and I'm just looking for advice about schools I might have missed, or schools that might not be a good match. I'd sincerely appreciate any advice!

Some info about me:
3.4ish GPA, 99th percentile composite PCAT, MI residency, no pharmacy experience, extensive molecular bio research experience including working on a paper this summer as first author, varsity swimmer for 2.5 years.
Attending CWRU, earning a Biology B.S. and Chemistry B.A. w/ a psych minor.

I'm aiming for dual-degree programs, with a PhD in an area like Pharmacology or Pharmaceutical Sciences. I'll be taking the GRE this summer, and I expect a good score. I also plan to be upfront about my career plans for industry or possibly academic work. I feel like my passion for research and pharmacy will come across in my personal statement, interviews, etc.


Definitely applying to:
University of Michigan
Ohio State University
University of Illinois - Chicago
University of Washington

Heavily considering:
University of Minnesota
SUNY Buffalo
University of North Carolina
Purdue
University of Maryland
South Carolina
Mercer
UCSD or UCSF

(I know UNC and UMinn don't have dual degree programs, but they are heavily research oriented, which still appeals to me, especially if I'm not accepted into any PharmD/PhD programs.)


I understand that PharmD/PhD programs are very competitive, and I'm not sure how many schools I should apply to, especially since it will be a very expensive process.

Once again, any advice at all would be greatly appreciated. Thank you so much for taking the time to read this!
Speaking purely from my perspective (as a UB student), I would highly recommend UB if you intend on pursuing a PhD in pharmaceutics. Much of the early work in creating pharmacokinetics as its own discipline was done here, and you'll have the ability to train under some of the very best minds in the business. UB receives an incredible amount of funding for research, with several multimillion dollar NIH grants each year. The PharmD program has some fantastic clinicians as teachers, and really allows for full integration of research interests in with the clinical curriculum.
 

OldPharm

Accepted!
Jan 28, 2010
116
1
0
Status
Pharmacy Student
Based on my application experience UoW and Purdue prefer applicants who want to be in retail and clinical pharmacy.
 

20YearsOfSnow

10+ Year Member
May 20, 2008
42
0
0
Detroit/Cleveland
Status
Pre-Pharmacy
My question is why you're doing the dual degree/pharmacy aspect. Why not just do a PhD? If you're going to work in industry or academia, do you need the PharmD? What's the motivation, especially with no pharmacy experience?
Thanks so much for your response! :)

I've thought about all three options (PharmD alone, PhD alone, dual degree) and I really feel like the latter is the best fit for me. I know I wouldn't be happy if my only full-time job were in retail pharmacy. However I could totally see myself working in a hospital, and clinical pharmacy especially interests me. A PhD on the other hand doesn't make much money (I do want a family someday) and there isn't much job security. The dual degree not only allows me to have an extra source of income by working as a floater a few times a month, but it opens up clinically based research options, as opposed to pure benchwork (which I do enjoy greatly, but I recognize that I may get sick of it in 20 years).

Essentially, having both degrees opens up new doors that would be more difficult to open with just a PharmD or PhD alone.


How come Wayne State isn't on the list? they offer a PharmD/PHD program
Honestly it's too close to where I grew up. I don't want to spend the next 8 years stuck at home when I could experience someplace new instead. Thanks so much for pointing it out though!


Speaking purely from my perspective (as a UB student), I would highly recommend UB if you intend on pursuing a PhD in pharmaceutics. Much of the early work in creating pharmacokinetics as its own discipline was done here, and you'll have the ability to train under some of the very best minds in the business. UB receives an incredible amount of funding for research, with several multimillion dollar NIH grants each year. The PharmD program has some fantastic clinicians as teachers, and really allows for full integration of research interests in with the clinical curriculum.
Thank you so much for your reply - this is exactly what I was hoping to hear! :)
 

xtm29x

5+ Year Member
Oct 11, 2009
77
0
91
Status
Pharmacy Student
For UCSF, you have to apply as a PharmD first then apply for the PhD to get into the dual degree program. There's no straight PharmD/PhD admission x.x
 

rxlynn

Senior Member
10+ Year Member
Nov 16, 2005
917
5
251
Atlanta, GA
Status
Pharmacy Student
Hi - I am a current Mercer student. I think you would be extremely competitive for admission here, with the exception of the fact that you have no pharmacy experience. The big advantage I see with the PharmD/PhD program here is that you would get a lot of personal attention - normally only one or two dual degree students per class of 145 or so, so you would be very unique. Our school is basically broken up into two departments - the PhD's are in Pharmaceutical Science, and the PharmD's are in Pharmacy Practice. However, all students get a lot of exposure to both because the PhD side of the house teaches all the A&P, pharmacology, and med chem - majority I've had were very good teachers! In terms of research, I think that pharmaceutics is probably the strong point, although I know they just hired one or two new pharmacology folks this year. Lab facilities are a weak point. One other thing that I see as a big plus - the dual degree program students get more flexibility in choosing 4th year rotations, and they don't end up doing them all in a row like most people because there is time required for research.
 

20YearsOfSnow

10+ Year Member
May 20, 2008
42
0
0
Detroit/Cleveland
Status
Pre-Pharmacy
For UCSF, you have to apply as a PharmD first then apply for the PhD to get into the dual degree program. There's no straight PharmD/PhD admission x.x
I think that may be the case for one or two of the other schools on my list as well. But UCSF still has the research track as part of the PharmD degree. Honestly I'm more hesitant about cost of living, travel, etc. associated with going to school all the way out in California.


The big advantage I see with the PharmD/PhD program here is that you would get a lot of personal attention - normally only one or two dual degree students per class of 145 or so, so you would be very unique.
Thanks so much for all the info rxlynn! :)
 
Nov 20, 2009
188
0
0
Status
Pharmacy Student
I'll give you my two cents; albeit I've been flamed in the past for my ignorant statements.

You will not need a PharmD/PhD in order to do bench-research and clinical research. A PharmD is all that will be required!

Reasoning: There are more and more PharmD's doing "post-doctoral" type of research following pharmacy school. Rather then going straight into a clinical residency, you could get training in an academic lab or in biotech/pharma. While in school, each school typically has a dozen or so students who are motivated to do mini-research projects each semester and during the summer times anyways. Research is basically built by the culmination of experience and training, a PhD is not necessary as long as you have another doctoral degree (whether it be an MD, PharmD, DVM [veterinary degree], etc.). There are many high powered institutions where the faculty members have only MD's and PharmD's and are able to do great research. Even though I personally have friends and former professors who have had MD/PhD's for your exact same reason, they all have noted that you'll ultimately end up following one direction as your passion (being a great clinician and a great researcher takes a lot of time... more then the required 40 hrs a week normally)