U2-Physicians 3F Hall Hub Back-hero

Longitudinal Clinical Rotation at Children’s Wisconsin Helps Alumna Achieve Residency Placement

Longitudinal clinical rotation at Children’s Wisconsin helps alumna achieve residency placement

During her first few days in pharmacy school, Shay Groth told her faculty mentor that her plan was to work at a community pharmacy. Originally, she wanted to be a pediatric neurosurgeon, but reconsidered after learning about the long timeline and expense of medical school. Groth had been working on the stock floor at Walgreens and then transferred to the pharmacy at a colleague’s recommendation. At the time, she had a narrow understanding of the vast career possibilities available to those who earn a Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) degree.

Groth’s faculty mentor, Bri Bakken, PharmD, MHA, asked her if she had ever considered pursuing residency and working in a hospital. “After talking with her, I found out I could do what I wanted to do. I really liked working with kids and found out I could be a pediatric pharmacist,” said Groth. “I really thank Dr. Bakken, to this day, for opening me up to that world.”

During pharmacy school, Dr. Groth had many opportunities for clinical rotations at Children’s, including a longitudinal placement during her third year, allowing her to spend five out of seven six-week rotations there.

Children’s Wisconsin is connected to the MCW campus via skywalk. The close partnership allows pharmacy students the unique opportunity to learn directly from pediatric pharmacy residents and staff in some of their classes, plus get hands-on experience. For example, students may assist with total parenteral nutrition, where the patient’s only nutrition source is through an IV. They also get lots of practice performing calculations for body weight or body surface area dosing.

“MCW did a really great job of matching me to my interest areas and my experience. I was very lucky with how many rotations I had at Children’s,” said Dr. Groth. “During my residency interviews, they were surprised to see how much experience I already had.”

Shay Goth at Children's Wisconsin

After graduating from the MCW School of Pharmacy in 2023, Dr. Groth is now a PGY1 resident at Children’s Wisconsin.

Dr. Groth pursued residency training to help her become a good candidate for specialized pediatric pharmacist positions. She says the learning environment at Children’s Wisconsin has been great, providing her with an assigned mentor, Dr. Meghan Wagner, an ICU pharmacist. There’s also an oncology pharmacist, Dr. Jenny Moran, who decided to take Dr. Groth under her wing, asking her to look at patient cases and talking through treatment options with her.

“What really drew me in to pediatric pharmacy was seeing the resilience of kids and how fast they bounce back from even the worst things you can possibly think of,” said Dr. Groth. “I feel like when children find out there’s something wrong with them, they take it personally and try learning what they can do to get better. It’s awe inspiring and really shows that people can learn and become more health literate.”