Which of AACP’s strategic priorities do you support and/or identify greatly with and why?
My two favorite initiatives are #2 Optimizing Pharmacy Education and Training Across the Lifespan of a Pharmacist and #4 Achieving Well-being for All. Number 2 is the reason I chose to pursue an academic pharmacy career, or more specifically, to bring more real-life pharmacy into the classroom. In the last few years, I have also been more focused on my own and others’ well-being, and how important this is for our students and practitioners. It’s not just about taking care of yourself; it involves working/learning in a culture that inspires, is supportive and fulfilling, and recognizes that we all need to find work/life integration that feeds our souls.
Why did you decide to pursue a career in pharmacy academia?
Having grown up in my parents’ pharmacy, I entered pharmacy school feeling like I had some practical knowledge and problem-solving skills learned in that environment. During pharmacy school, it felt like there weren’t many opportunities where real-world lessons were incorporated into the didactic curriculum (this was pre-Pharm.D.). Thankfully the experiential curriculum helped with this, but I still felt there could have been more practical skills and knowledge incorporated into other parts of the curriculum. I was able to focus much of my career in creating skills-based curricula at two universities to help meet this desire and help prepare Pharm.D. students for experiential curricula and beyond.
What has been the greatest challenge in your career?
Setting aside lofty goals from my early career to deliberately seek an alternative path for better work/life integration.
How many years have you been a member of AACP?
30+! I joined in 1991, after I made the decision to leave full-time pharmacy practice, go to graduate school, and pursue an academic career.
What advice do you have for new AACP members?
Don’t be shy and don’t let imposter syndrome influence your confidence! All of us can contribute and learn in so many ways—attend some conferences, and find small ways to contribute and get involved in the Association that support your career goals.