Two Concordias Partner to Offer Shortened Path to PharmD Degree

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Concordia University Wisconsin’s School of Pharmacy continues to expand its 3+4 PharmD program.
Concordia University Wisconsin’s School of Pharmacy continues to expand its 3+4 PharmD program.

With their common missions of preparing students for service in the name of Christ, Concordia University Wisconsin (CUW) and Concordia University St. Paul (CSP) have partnered to prepare the next generation of pharmacists for the Church and world.

Leadership from the two universities recently signed an agreement that gives students the opportunity to receive a bachelor’s degree and Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) degree from the two universities in a total of seven years rather than the eight it would otherwise require.

The 3+4 dual degree agreement that the universities signed states that a student may complete three years of undergraduate coursework at CSP and, with successful admission into the PharmD program at CUW, earn a bachelor’s—either a Bachelor of Arts in chemistry or a Bachelor of Science in biology—after successful completion of the first year of pharmacy school at the Mequon-based Concordia.

“This agreement is a natural pairing,” said Dr. Michael Brown, associate dean for academic affairs in the School of Pharmacy and professor of pharmacy practice. “Both of our programs share a common focus on academic excellence as well as a common mission and vision for our graduates. We look forward to working with our fellow Concordia System university in St. Paul and its graduates, continuing their development in the Doctor of Pharmacy program.”

This is the third agreement of its kind for CUW’s School of Pharmacy. In addition to CSP, students from Edgewood College and Alverno College have the opportunity to earn a bachelor’s degree in a shortened timeframe while pursuing their PharmD degree from CUW.

These agreements complement the 3+4 opportunity already in place for CUW students who complete both their undergraduate and PharmD degree. With CUW’s own 3+4 program, the typical student would complete three years of undergraduate coursework, including the pre-pharmacy requirements, core requirements and general elective requirements, followed by four years of Doctor of Pharmacy coursework. A Bachelor of Science in pharmaceutical sciences would be awarded after the first year of the Doctor of Pharmacy coursework, with a PharmD degree awarded three years later.

Leaders of Concordia St. Paul say that one of the driving forces of the university is to provide students with relevant expertise in their fields, connections and personal and professional growth. Partnering with CUW not only allows CSP to provide an accelerated PharmD degree, it affords students another opportunity to accomplish that.

“Concordia St. Paul is delighted to partner with Concordia Wisconsin to offer our students the opportunity to receive a bachelor’s degree in biology or chemistry and a Doctor of Pharmacy degree in as little as 7 years,” says Dr. Marilyn Reineck, vice president for academic affairs at Concordia University St. Paul. “Both universities have the goal to develop servant leaders who will respond with compassion to the needs of their communities as they carry out God’s work in the world. Care for and mentoring of students along with academic excellence is prioritized at both universities and this will aid students’ transition from CSP to CUW.”