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The Medical College of Wisconsin School of Pharmacy offers accelerated dual degree program

The MCW School of Pharmacy also offers accelerated, cost-saving tracks to Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) degree completion, including ground-breaking dual degree programs and partnerships with Wisconsin colleges and universities.

As the role of the pharmacist is evolving, the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW) School of Pharmacy is transforming pharmacy education.

Students at the MCW School of Pharmacy learn advanced patient care skills that go beyond traditional pharmacy, such as performing point-of-care testing, physical assessment and administering vaccines. Graduates from the MCW School of Pharmacy can serve as an expanded care provider on a multidisciplinary team of healthcare professionals while focusing on a variety of specialties such as primary care, pharmacogenomics, oncology or psychiatry.

The MCW School of Pharmacy also offers accelerated, cost-saving tracks to Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) degree completion, including ground-breaking dual degree programs and partnerships with Wisconsin colleges and universities. “When I came to Marquette, I was still indecisive about what I wanted to do. And when I found out about the 3+3 program, I honestly fell in love with it,” said Olivia Vlasin, an accepted dual degree student. “I learned about the developing role of the pharmacist. It’s not about just passing out medicine over-the-counter. There are these unseen roles of pharmacists. That’s why I decided to apply and I’m happy that I did.”

Students, like Vlasin, interested in a career in pharmacy have the unique opportunity to participate in the MCW School of Pharmacy dual degree program when entering into one of eight partner universities located throughout the state of Wisconsin. The MCW School of Pharmacy has 3+3 or 4+3 dual degree program partnerships with Alverno College, Cardinal Stritch University, Carroll University, Marquette University, Mount Mary University, St. Norbert College, Wisconsin Lutheran College, and Viterbo University. Interested students can apply to the dual degree program by the end of their freshman year.

In addition, St. Norbert’s also has an option for incoming high school seniors to apply to the dual degree program. Those accepted into a 3+3 dual degree program at a partner institution will complete three years of undergraduate classes there and then, upon meeting the pharmacy program prerequisites, can enter the three-year accelerated PharmD program at the MCW School of Pharmacy.

After completing their first year of classes at the MCW School of Pharmacy, students’ credits will reverse transfer back to their undergraduate school allowing them to complete their Bachelor of Science (BS) or Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree and obtain a PharmD in just 6 years. “It’s a really efficient way to go through pharmacy school. I think the really nice thing about this dual degree program is that I still will get a bachelor’s degree from Wisconsin Lutheran College in the first year that I am at MCW, which I think will not only make me stand out as a candidate for jobs, but it will be beneficial for my life,” said Hanna Gibbons, an accepted dual degree student.

Students are able to alleviate the financial burden of the two extra years of tuition needed for a traditional combined BA/BS and PharmD degree route. “The main advantage is just getting into the work field sooner. There’s a cost benefit because you’re making money instead of spending money,” said Morgan Carroll, a student recently accepted into the 3+3 program from Marquette University. “I was super excited and kind of relieved, knowing as a freshman that I’m already accepted,” she said. Those accepted into a 4+3 dual degree program receive early assurance admission to the PharmD program at the MCW School of Pharmacy.

Once students complete their undergraduate degree, they are directly admitted into the MCW School of Pharmacy. Students enrolled in the dual degree program will have the opportunity to attend events at the MCW School of Pharmacy throughout their undergraduate education, including meetings with faculty mentors, career discussions, job shadowing opportunities with MCW School of Pharmacy’s clinical partners, such as Froedtert Hospital and the Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, and the potential for access to undergraduate research opportunities through MCW School of Pharmacy.

“I definitely think that being able to work with my peers before I get to the Medical College of Wisconsin is going to be the best part because I get to keep working with them over time and develop a relationship with them,” said Kira Langkau, the first student from Mount Mary University accepted to the 3+3 program. “The part of the program that I’m most excited about is probably the payment because I don’t have to pay for an additional two years of school like most kids will,” said Langkau.

View video
Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW) School of Pharmacy dual degree students share their excitement about the program after receiving their acceptance letters at a recent Discovery Day event. Hear what they’re looking forward to most on their journey to become pharmacists of the future!”