Maureen Chang (USC PharmD ’02), pharmacy manager at Walgreens, explains explains why she volunteers as a preceptor to mentor USC Mann School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences students and introduce them to “real world” experiences.
Why did you choose to become a preceptor for USC School of Pharmacy students?
USC’s PharmD program is a world-class, competitive program and students who are admitted and attend the School generally have strong determination and goals for success.
How do preceptors play a vital role in preparing students for future jobs in the healthcare industry?
Preceptors can share their experiences and knowledge acquired within their practices and provide guidance to the students in preparation for their future jobs whether it be clinical knowledge, communications or personal development and relations.
What do you enjoy most about being a preceptor?
Over the past 20 years that I have been a preceptor, I have enjoyed the enthusiasm and many personalities of all the students that I have crossed paths with. Their eagerness to learn and absorb as much knowledge and experiences with me has kept me motivated to continue to teach and cultivate an environment of growth. As much as the students learn from me, I keep updated with current guidelines and new information through them.
What advice do you have for current PharmD students?
“Be like water,” as Bruce Lee says. Pharmacy is an ever-changing profession and we need to be able to adapt and adjust with the times. Over the last decade, we have seen the importance of a pharmacist’s role in protecting the public and providing accessibility to care in times of need. I would advise pharmacy students to be creative and think outside of the box – there is always a solution to any problem.
Why should other pharmacists consider being a preceptor for the school?
Every pharmacist has experience and knowledge to share whether it be a newly graduated pharmacist or a seasoned veteran. Every student is different and can benefit from connecting with a preceptor they can learn from which may significantly impact their practice in the future both professionally and personally.