STORRS, CT — Amelia Arnold says working as a clerk in her home town pharmacy sparked her interest in the field.
“I worked in a local pharmacy part time on Saturdays and I really loved it,” says Arnold, who is graduating with a Pharm.D. degree, earned in a six-year program. “I knew the customers and I enjoyed the relationships that I built.”
She says her experience in UConn’s pharmacy program has been rewarding.
“It’s a great, small, close-knit pharmacy community,” says Arnold. “You get to know every faculty member and they know you, but you also have all the advantages of a large public research university.”
Arnold has been actively involved in pharmacy programs and events at UConn. “There are so many wonderful opportunities here,” she says. “There’s something going on all the time.”
Arnold, who is graduating with a 3.8 GPA, has been president of the student chapter of the National Consulting Pharmacists Association, president of the student leadership society Phi Lambda Sigma, and treasurer of the pharmacy honor society Rho Chi.
She has also been involved in the UConn chapter of the American Pharmacists Association and the Pharmacy Student Government.
She was also a community assistant on a pre-pharmacy floor learning community, where she was voted community assistant of the year. “I enjoyed mentoring and the opportunity to work with younger students,” she says.
Arnold is pursuing a post-graduate residency in community pharmacy at Wilkes University in Pennsylvania. “That makes me unique compared to my peers, most of whom do residencies in hospitals,” she says.
“I love working with people and this residency offered me the opportunity to work directly with the public.”
Her future plans include working in a community-based pharmacy, where pharmacists counsel patients about medications, administer immunizations, and provide clinics and other services.
“More and more today, especially as the baby boomers age, people are realizing that pharmacists have incredible skills that are often underused,” Arnold says.
“They can do so much more than just verifying prescriptions behind a counter. It could take days to see your doctor if you have a cold, but you can go to your pharmacist for information as well as medication. It’s one of the most consistently trusted professions.”