Importance of extracurricular activities for the role of a future pharmacist

Jul 24, 2020
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Hello:

I am planning to attend pharmacy school in the fall.I read that extracurricular activities ( not co-curricular) play an important role in the professional development of a future pharmacist, but I somehow fail to see how such activities that have no direct relationship to the pharmacy degree course help one to develop their professional skills that would help them later in their pharmacy career. What extracurricular activities are beneficial to the pharmacy career?
Thanks for any helpful comments.
 
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JustFillIt

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The things that you fail to see are true.


In before everyone comes and tells you how crazy you are for going to pharmacy school!
 
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Marzapan

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Hello:

I am planning to attend pharmacy school in the fall.I read that extracurricular activities ( not co-curricular) play an important role in the professional development of a future pharmacist, but I somehow fail to see how such activities that have no direct relationship to the pharmacy degree course help one to develop their professional skills that would help them later in their pharmacy career. What extracurricular activities are beneficial to the pharmacy career?
Thanks for any helpful comments.
Extracurricular activites are beneficial because they allow you to meet people.

The pharmacy degree is not beneficial because there are 15,000 of you with that same thing graduating each year competing for the 0 jobs out there.

What do you think will be more beneficial to your career/getting a job? Knowing people or having a credential that everyone else has?
 
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Extracurriculars don't make you a better pharmacist, but they are intended to make you a better person, which in turn makes you a better pharmacist. Their role it to have you do service so that you realize how important it is to build up/give back to your community (instead of tearing it down like the majority of this forum does). They're also useful for leadership opportunities so that throughout your career you will be a better team member and have better leadership skills (the majority of pharmacists are managers, at least of techs).
Throughout my entire pharmacy education, I never joined a single club. I didn't think they were useful and I felt like they were just trying to get my money (which with club fees and the majority of activities were fundraising for charity, I still stand by that statement).
The one thing I realized after school was that I missed the opportunity to network. I didn't really network with people outside of my class, which may come back to bite me. So I'd recommend being a part of clubs as you start your education.
 
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PharmDBro2017

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It forces you to build relationships, network, be more personable, and makes you a better leader in the end.

You may not see the importance at the time, but it pays dividends later.
 
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RxEvileye

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Did you do any extracurricular activities as a pre-pharm? Those have not shaped or helped you in any way?

They are important, but not so important that you should overload yourself with them. Devote yourself to something you care about, not three random leadership positions as resume boosters.

Do you have examples of organizations or extracurriculars that you think might not be related to future practice? Advocacy is important (APhA, ASHP, etc.), health fairs are good practice and sometimes topics that aren't covered as much in the curriculum, clinic volunteering is direct patient experience and could help you appreciate different patient populations like people experiencing homelessness, etc.
 
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mentos

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Waste of time and money. I gave ASHP $40 in my first year cause I was naive and it didn't do anything for me. From then on, I just went to every organization's meetings for the free food so the joke was on them.
 
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PharmtoCS

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Prioritize getting a job as an intern. Work experience >>>>> extracurricular activities.

That being said, don't waste $200k+ going to pharmacy school. Go to trade school or coding bootcamp, or get a degree in computer science, engineering, finance, accounting, etc. for a fraction of the cost and time of pharmacy school, get paid as much in salary, and work your way up with experience.

Pharmacy is a sinking ship. Don't board.
 
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RxAndroid

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Would have to agree with other posters...extra curricular activities are really more about networking and prioritizing an interneship/work experience are definitely critical to transition into the role as RPh..."get your foot in the door" so to say
 
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KARM12

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I would get a job.

Honestly, join something you are interested in over doing something just to do it.
 
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DrWrong

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Good luck getting a residency after graduation if you don't have any extracurriculars.
 
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Amicable Angora

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Extracurriculars show you a glimpse of living the residency life. It’s all about finding ways to waste time while pretending to make a difference. A favorite technique is to pretend to be concerned about the job market, but then downplay it with irrelevant and academic viewpoints (there’s more and more new positions and opportunities for hardworking pharmacists!!!)

If attending useless meetings with pompous people is enjoyable for you, you may be suited for residency.

Off the top of my head I can make up 5 nonsensical-waste-of-time ideas that would make “splendid“ extracurricular discussions:

1. Drug drug interactions: Topical nsaid cream with systematic nsaid use. Is it safe???
2. Educating the doctor: when we call the doctor when the DAW box is checked
3. Vancomycin abuse among community youths: should we provide clean needles?
4. Wrong patient wrong dose: a case study of pharmacists helping the nurses identify the right patient.
5. How to network: successful pharmacists are go-getters and make meaningful connections!!!
 
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RxAndroid

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If anything, I find myself engaging in more extracurricular activities due to the boredom of working in retail/community pharmacy & not being comitted to family life/SO....having a lot of fun right now with DIY home projects, exercise, creative writing...possibly looking into learning some skills/taking up welding, auto mechanics, and firearms/target practice. Might get back into stuff like bowling, golf, soccer, intramurals, etc. Great way to distract from drugs/alcohol/recreation substance use/etc.

"Don't do drugs kids, drugs are bad....mmmmkay?"
1596983789782.png
 

Marzapan

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Did you do any extracurricular activities as a pre-pharm? Those have not shaped or helped you in any way?
No, they were accepted on the basis of having a pulse and eligibility to take out $200k+ in student loans.
 
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Xenophylia

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How about joining your local "beating your head against the wall" team? That experience will be priceless, especially if you eventually wind up in retail...
 
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RxAndroid

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Eh, on second thought, screw welding...finding myself getting into auto detailing and DIY auto maintenance currently (so much more practical, plus the whole self reliance aspect/satisfaction). DIY Home gym is sick right now (most serious hobby)...bulk of my extracurricular activity budget. Will be playing around with learning to cut my own hair (again satisfying to do something yourself without relying on someone else)...to a certain degree (yeah, I have no ambition to become a farmer/livestock owner)
 

projektreverb

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May 28, 2018
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Eh, on second thought, screw welding...finding myself getting into auto detailing and DIY auto maintenance currently (so much more practical, plus the whole self reliance aspect/satisfaction). DIY Home gym is sick right now (most serious hobby)...bulk of my extracurricular activity budget. Will be playing around with learning to cut my own hair (again satisfying to do something yourself without relying on someone else)...to a certain degree (yeah, I have no ambition to become a farmer/livestock owner)

I’ve been in the Hobby auto detailing and repair hobby since before I could drive. It truly is amazing how much money I’ve saved when I did the math. If you play your cards right, you can monetize it too ;)
 
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