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MCW Partnering on an Accelerated Pathway for Pharmacy Students

Pictured is George E. MacKinnon III, PhD, MS, RPh, FASHP, FNAP, founding dean of MCW’s School of Pharmacy.

A new dual-degree partnership between the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW) School of Pharmacy and UW–Milwaukee allows students to earn their bachelor’s degree and Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) in as little as six years.

“This dual-degree program lessens the overall cost of undergraduate and professional education by reducing two full years of education,” said George E. MacKinnon III, PhD, MS, RPh, FASHP, FNAP, founding dean of MCW’s School of Pharmacy. “This partnership will help those living in southeast Wisconsin remain in the area for the breadth of their education, decreasing costs associated with moving to other campuses, while staying engaged in the local community.”

UW–Milwaukee undergraduate students pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in biological sciences, microbiology or biochemistry can apply to the program. They will take classes for three years at UW–Milwaukee. Once they meet the admission requirements for MCW’s School of Pharmacy, they advance to the three-year PharmD curriculum.

MCW’s School of Pharmacy is one of only eighteen U.S. institutions with an accelerated three-year program to a PharmD degree.

“The traditional pathway to becoming a pharmacist—four years of college followed by four years of pharmacy school—can seem daunting to many, particularly first-generation students,” said Scott Gronert, dean of UW–Milwaukee’s College of Letters & Science. “Programs like this, that streamline the experience, will attract more students and help fill the demand for pharmacists faster.”

Interested students should apply during freshman or sophomore year of college so MCW can assist them with completing prerequisite courses. Dual-degree students will be partnered with an MCW faculty member and have access to career discussions and shadowing opportunities with MCW’s clinical partners. Student services are available at both institutions to provide advice as early as junior year of high school.

More information is available on the UW-Milwaukee website and the MCW website.