Message from the Dean
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
It has been a busy month for everyone in the college, but I’m pleased to say that a lot of hard work has come to fruition. The college welcomed representatives from the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) last month for our reaccreditation site visit. This 18-month process successfully concluded on October 27. While the official report on our reaccreditation does not come out until early next year, we received overwhelmingly positive feedback from our site visitors. I have been in academic pharmacy for 30 years and I have had the privilege of participating in a total of five site visits. I have never heard such positive comments from a group of site visitors. Ever. I’m so proud of our faculty, staff, students, preceptors, and alums for their honest assessments of our college and their contributions to the accreditation visit. Thank you to everyone involved, including our site visitors who trekked through our two campuses in Spokane and Yakima, and spent an enormous amount of time getting to know the ins and outs of our college at our two locations. The exceptional reviews by our alums and students are certainly a testament to the quality education and special community we have created together.
Now that the reaccreditation site visit is over, November has been a month of getting ready for the year ahead. The month kicked off with a health science preview day on November 5 for high school and college students in the Yakima Valley area. We have been making a concerted effort to recruit students in the area to our PharmD program in Yakima as the need for pharmacists in the area is becoming increasingly apparent. Signing bonuses for pharmacists range from $50,000 to $70,000, and we know by talking to recruiters that more pharmacists are needed. Associate Dean of External Relations Julie Akers and Director of Alumni Relations Kelly Sylvester put together a fantastic networking meet and greet for students to interact with recruiters from health care systems and chain pharmacies across Washington state. If you know someone who would make a great Coug pharmacist, don’t forget to refer them!
As we head into Thanksgiving, I’m grateful for your continued support of the college. A generous, anonymous donation earlier this year helped us launch the Rural Health Initiative, which has taken on a life of its own. In just 6 months, we accepted our inaugural class of student pharmacists specializing in rural health and we are in the middle of recruiting our second class of students for the program. We are actively recruiting a faculty member focused on rural health in partnership with Providence in Centralia, and a second faculty position in psychiatric pharmacy together with Comprehensive Healthcare in Yakima. Other partnerships with our community and health care system partners continue to develop. In less than a year, the Rural Health Initiative has made significant strides to improve health care access in rural areas of in the state. While we have a long road ahead of us, I am thankful for the wonderful support you all have provided—support that will help so many people living in rural Washington for years to come.
Mark Leid, Professor and Dean
WSU College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences