Jorge is has been an inspiration, mentor, and friend to me since I started pharmacy school. He is graduating in May with a dual degree and will be an amazing pharmacist. He has written this blog post to share some of his experiences with you all. I hope you find inspiration through his story as well!
My name is Jorge Ng Zheng and I am a 5th year (no kidding) student in the PharmD program at The Ohio State University (OSU). I am currently completing my 5th year as I decided to pursue a Master of Business Administration (MBA) along with my PharmD. I attended OSU as an undergrad as well. I was involved in several student organizations such as The Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy (AMCP), Pharmacy Council, Student Society of Health-System Pharmacists (SSHP), Student National Pharmaceutical Association (SNPhA), and Phi Lambda Sigma (PLS) while in pharmacy school. I decided to be involved in all of these organizations with an open mind and the goal of identifying an area of pharmacy to pursue after graduation.
I would like to elaborate on my involvement with Phi Lambda Sigma (PLS) specifically. PLS is the national leadership society within the field of pharmacy. Students are nominated into the society by current members for their involvement and leadership potential. The mission of the organization is to identify, foster, and develop leadership potential in individuals who will then make a positive impact in the field of pharmacy. I took on leadership roles in several of the organizations early in my PharmD career which resulted in my nomination into PLS during my P1 year.
I was honored and proud to be recognized and be a part of this network of leaders for life. Along with the recognition, I felt the need to take on a hand-on role and be more involved in the organization. I served as President and Vice President of PLS. My goal for the organization was to increase its visibility among students in order to get a variety of nominees and ensure continued growth. I was fortunate to work with an excellent executive board and, with their help, coordinate events such as the Mr. PharmD Pageant, the Mentor-Mentee Program, and The Etiquette Lunch to name a few.
As graduation draws near, I hope to continue being involved and giving back. The Mentor-Mentee program in particular was an amazing experience as it allowed me to connect with undergraduate students and serve as mentor/guide. I hope to continue this as a pharmacist. My goal is to help students find interests in pharmacy and hopefully develop them into passions moving forward. My experience with student organizations and PLS has been incredible. Involvement allowed me to explore personal interests, meet amazing mentors and students, and get a more well-rounded perspective on pharmacy. It is obvious that you should do well in the classroom but learning extends beyond the walls of Parks Hall.
If I were to give one piece of advice to prospective students it would to step up and develop the leader within you. Everyone has the potential to be an effective and inspiring leader. You do not have to be the most outgoing, the loudest, or awesome at public speaking for that matter to be a great leader. Leadership effectiveness is unique the each person, just like personal style. Be curious while in pharmacy school, step up when given the opportunity to lead, and be involved. The College of Pharmacy has 20+ student organizations (and OSU as whole has 1300+!) for you to explore your passions and learn to be the leader you are meant to be. As you start this next chapter, keep in mind that you will be challenged and sometimes have to juggle many things. I am confident that you will be able to handle everything successfully, find the value/lesson in every experience, and have no regrets looking back (just like I am today).
Thank you for your time and best of luck!
Jorge Ng Zheng