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Week 2: It's a Great Big Wonderful Tomorrow
Week 2: It’s a Great Big Wonderful Tomorrow
April 14 – April 18

I’m a huge Disney fan – a Disneyland fan to be more specific.  Although the reference to Disney in last week’s blog title was a bit clearer, I felt like this week’s title was a little less obvious. “It’s a Great Big Wonderful Tomorrow” is a song featured in Carousel of Progress, an attraction that made its home at Disneyland in Anaheim, California from 1967 to 1973.  The attraction explores the influence of technological advances by showing the daily life of an American family at six different points in time beginning in 1904.  The song reflects not only the enthusiasm of innovation from the attraction but also Walt Disney, who was known as an eternal optimist.  As I end my second week here at AACP as an APPE student, this song resonates to me more than ever.
 
This week I completed my meetings with all the senior staff members, with the exception of one who is currently out of town.  My goal during each of my one-on-one meetings was to obtain a better idea of how each staff member’s responsibilities fit within this association as a whole.  One thing I noticed that was consistent through every meeting I had was the amount of positivity and enthusiasm each staff member had regarding their activities and individual projects.  Each staff member was also passionate about progress within AACP—the addition of new services, the improvement of existing programs, and other ways to can service their members to the best of their abilities.

Hearing about each AACP staff member’s role within the organization reminded me of a conversation I had with Jen Adams, my preceptor, early last week.  Not all of the staff members here are pharmacists, but Jen is one of them.  She is often asked whether she misses practicing or having direct patient care as a pharmacist. Pharmacy educators have an indirect hand in patient care since they are educating students to be the best health care providers they can be to serve their patients.  Working at AACP allows you to have an exponential impact.  Here, you can help pharmacy educators and schools/colleges of pharmacy to be the best they can be which would affect teaching outcomes that help improve the knowledge and skill set of students who would ultimately provide better care to patients in the end.
 
From the beginning of my pharmacy career, I’ve wanted to be an educator.  Any time I was asked about my future career in this field, I would automatically answer that I was looking forward to a faculty appointment at a school or college of pharmacy.  The idea of being able to mentor future pharmacy students was always exciting to me.  I’ve always enjoyed helping those who were in my place not too long ago and being able to share the knowledge I’ve learned in my own journey.  After gaining more insight about AACP, it has made me begin to explore other possibilities for my future.  Maybe I can make a bigger impact than I originally thought?
 
After realizing that my future goals weren’t as concrete as I thought they were before this week, I wanted to set another goal for myself in the upcoming week.  I want to explore the possibility of association management in my future.  To do this, I want to be able to understand more of the attributes of those who work at AACP and if this type of career would be a good fit for me.  I was also provided the book 7 Measures of Success: what Remarkable Associations Do that Others Don’t on my desk, a resource I am looking forward to cracking open on Monday.
 
This week has been a bit more slow-paced as I finished meeting with all of the AACP staff and continued with my projects.  However, I feel as if this might be the calm before the storm as we start to prepare for the 3rd USA Science and Engineering Festival next weekend.  Based on my calendar, I can tell I will be quite busy preparing in the next week!  However, I think it’s going to be a great event so I’m already more than excited to be attending.
 
Hillary Aphaisuwan
PharmD Candidate, Class of 2014
Midwestern University, College of Pharmacy – Glendale

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