Toppenish pharmacy director honored for work with student pharmacists

YAKIMA — Patrick O’Connor, the director of pharmacy at Toppenish Community Hospital, has been named the 2014 Preceptor of the Year by the College of Pharmacy at Washington State University.

O’Connor was presented with the award on Tuesday, July 22, at the WSU Doctor of Pharmacy Program Open House on the Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences campus in Yakima, Wash. The event brought the two universities together with the local health care community to celebrate the WSU-PNWU partnership to expand health sciences education in the Yakima area.

The award, presented by College of Pharmacy Student Services Director Dr. Jennifer Robinson at the event, is an example of how influential and effective WSU pharmacy preceptors are in developing the next generation of pharmacists.

“By sharing your knowledge, experiences and providing objective feedback, you are helping to shape and discover new capabilities in our student pharmacists every day. Your efforts enhance the student pharmacist experience,” said Robinson in her award presentation. “We are grateful for the spirit of service you have shown in preparing our student pharmacists for their professional goals.”

O’Connor was nominated by WSU College of Pharmacy 2014 graduate Dr. Jalena Young.

“Patrick helped me develop my confidence as a pharmacist that I took with me to all my other rotations,” said Young.

O’Connor graduated from the WSU pharmacy program in 1995, and has been a pharmacy preceptor since 2001. Preceptors supervise student pharmacists while they move through a series of six-week rotations that make up their final year of the Doctor of Pharmacy program.

The Preceptor of the Year Award is given annually to a pharmacy preceptor for outstanding contributions to the educational development of future pharmacists by demonstrating high standards of professionalism, ethics and clinical practice within the experiential training environment. O’Connor was selected for his consistent demonstration of  commitment to the student pharmacists on rotation, his colleagues, his leadership at Toppenish Community Hospital, and to the pharmacy profession as a whole.

pat o'conner at ceremony

Pat O’Connor (right) is pictured at the 2014 Preceptor of the Year award presentation with his award nominator Jalena Young.

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