CHS Hours and Giving Back to the Community

Hi Everyone!


I hope you are all excited for Thanksgiving Break! In the spirit of thankfulness, I wanted to talk about some of the many opportunities that College of Pharmacy members give back to the Columbus community.


As students at the College we are required to do a minimum number of community health service hours every year (but are encouraged to go above and beyond that minimum number). P1s are expected to do 10 hours, P2s 20 hours, P3s 30 hours, and P4s 10 hours. So, what constitutes a community health service event? Any event that provides education or health benefit to a community member (think dispensing at a free clinic or a blood pressure screening) AND is supervised by a licensed pharmacist. These are also wonderful learning opportunities you are able to apply knowledge from the classroom to patient care and counseling.


Spotlighting Some CHS Opportunities:


  • Physicians Care Connection: This is an interprofessional free clinic run on Monday nights out of the Columbus Public Health Department. Students help dispense medications off a small formulary and then counsel every single patient that gets a medication at the clinic.
  • New Life: This is an interprofessional free clinic run on Sunday mornings out of a nearby Methodist church that includes physicians, medical students and nurses. Students help dispense small supplies of medications, primarily for blood pressure and pain. They provide drug information, help write prescriptions and provide information on other places patients can get access to free medications around Columbus.
  • Katy’s Kids: Work with local elementary schools and College Mentor for Kids to teach kids about medication safety. There are 10 stations that kids can go through including Candy vs. Medicine, Poison Control, Counting Pills, Amoxicillin Reconstitution, and Medication Cabinet, and pharmacy students volunteer at one station to run.
  • Columbus Free Clinic: This is an interprofessional free clinic run out of a Family Medicine Clinic on High Street. It is a collaboration with the College of Medicine, Social work and Nursing, and all Pharmacist volunteers are Ohio State Wexner Medical Center Residents. Students can either participate as a dispensing or ambulatory volunteer. Dispensing volunteers help with data entry, dispensing and patient counseling. Ambulatory volunteers participate in patient interviews, chronic care monitoring and evaluation, and medication adjustment and prescription writing.
  • Faith Mission: This is an interprofessional free clinic on Thursday nights where pharmacy volunteers help gather information from patients including a list of medications (RX, OTC, supplements), and any other pertinent information. Volunteers also fill prescriptions and counsel patients on their medications.
  • Charitable Pharmacy: Charitable Pharmacy is run Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays whose mission is to provide affordable and appropriate pharmacy services and coordinate access to health care for patients living at or below 200% of the federal poverty level, are uninsured or underinsured. Volunteers help with filling and inventory and can shadow APPE students during patient encounters.


Though this is just a list of some of the opportunities, I hope it provides you with a little more insight into some of the ways our students give back at the College!

Cassie Rush

Working in Pharmacy School – A Continuing Process

This past week at the College of Pharmacy we had our annual Pharmacy Career Fair hosted by our Career Services office and American Pharmacists Association (APhA) chapter. I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to share with you my experiences with working while in pharmacy school. Before I share too much though and as this is my first blog post I would like to briefly introduce myself. 

My name is Killian Rodgers and I am a current P2 student here at Ohio State. Originally from the Washington DC area, I did my undergrad at the University of Michigan before moving on down to Columbus. Besides being an Ambassador Coordinator, I am the President of our chapter of Phi Delta Chi, a professional pharmacy fraternity. Outside of school I am a big foodie and love exploring the great food and craft beer scene here in Columbus!

One last thing before I discuss working in pharmacy school – I can’t stress enough that everyones experiences will be different. I have friends that don’t work at all, have friends who work nearly full time, and everywhere in between. There are so many different ways to handle jobs while in school and there is no “right” way to do it. 

When I started pharmacy school last fall, I had the mentality that I wanted to focus on my academic success for the first year and not work at all. So for the first month of school I ignored the emails and facebook posts with internship opportunities. However once I settled in and school got underway I realized the way the curriculum is set up is very conducive to working. I had Wednesdays completely off, half days on Friday, and could do all my school work during the week so I didn’t really need to worry about the weekends. So when the career fair happened last year I talked to a few employers and ended up having a great conversation with the recruiter for Meijer, a regional big-box store with a few locations around Columbus.

After a few interviews I was hired and started working with Meijer in October. I worked with them all through the rest of my first semester and through winter break. Besides having some extra money to help with expenses, working during the semester was great because it provided me with context for what we were learning in class. When we learned about counseling techniques, I was able to observe then practice them in real life with real patients. When we were certified as immunization providers I was able to turn around and start giving shingles vaccines to patients the very next week. Working gave me a great sense that what I was learning was applicable and useful. 

I worked with Meijer throughout the spring semester and into the summer as well but was beginning to realize that community pharmacy wasn’t my calling. So towards the end of the spring semester I began working with the OSU Wexner Medical Center in the Pharmacy Informatics department. This job is a very unique position that would take a whole different blog post to explain but I bring it up to share that so many people do have different jobs throughout school. One of the great things about internships is that they are easy to move between so you can experience new things as your interest change! 

Currently, I work my Informatics job during school and during breaks and absolutely love it. 

I think the key takeaway from my experiences working in pharmacy school is that you can find all sorts of opportunities and shouldn’t feel tied down to a single one. School is the best time to explore different types of pharmacy! I’ve found my niche but it was definitely a journey. 

Summer in Pharmacy School

Hi Everyone!


With classes just beginning for the school year, I thought it would be a good idea to give you a glimpse into what summer as a PharmD student maylook like!


As a rising (now current) P3 my summer started at the beginning of May and ran through mid-August, which allowed for a pretty full schedule, including school rotations, community health service hours, internship hours at Nationwide Children’s, vacations, and of course time spent with family and friends!


Though it is not at all required to do, I enjoy doing some school rotations during the summer. I find that it allows me to keep my clinical knowledge fresh and allows me to have more free time during the school year to take a break or focus on other things. This summer I did my community rotation at Meijer, my patient care rotation with a hematology/oncology pharmacist at Nationwide Children’s, and my medication reconciliation rotation at The Ohio State Wexner Medical Center.


Additionally, I was able to complete my community health service hours (CHS) by volunteering at free clinics around Columbus and with events at local elementary schools to help teach kids about the importance of medication safety. CHS hours are a wonderful way to give back to the community and many of the clinics rely solely on College of Pharmacy volunteers in order to run the pharmacy portion of the clinic.


A large part of my summer was also dedicated to my internship at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. As an inpatient pharmacy intern, I help staff our main pharmacy and intensive care satellite pharmacy and perform medication reconciliations with patients in the emergency department. Additionally, interns participate in weekly intern meetings which further professional development through journal clubs, presentations and CV review. I also had my own research project to work on throughout the summer, that I later presented on at the end of summer, and 2 mini-clinical weeks in general pediatrics and with the cardiothoracic intensive care team from which we gave a case presentation. Fortunately, I absolutely love my job and workplace and thoroughly enjoy the professional development that it continually provides.


Of course, summer would not be complete without vacation/relaxation and time with family and friends! For me this meant starting the summer off with a weekend trip to Hocking Hills with a group of classmates, where we were able to hike/enjoy the outdoors and time with one another. I also had a long weekend trip to Nashville—my first time truly taking in the city, which was an absolute blast, especially as I am a huge food fan and love country music! You know it is a great trip when you manage to hit a popular restaurant spot for every meal—I highly recommend Biscuit Love, Five Daughters Bakery and Hattie B’s, though there are so many other spots to check out too! The summer ended with a very relaxing trip to Florida with close friends from class—with lots of time spent on the beach enjoying some sunshine! Throughout the summer, I had countless nights, days and weekends spent with family and friends, enjoying all that Columbus has to offer and the pool at my apartment.


Hopefully this glimpse at summer in pharmacy school can give you a look at what your future summers may also look like! However you choose to spend it, I highly recommend relaxing and enjoying yourself!


Find Your Balance

Hey everyone!

This week, I would like to discuss school-life balance. It’s super important and crucial for success in pharmacy school!

Let me tell you all a bit about my experience with this:

I walked into Parks Hall on August 1, 2016, ready to tackle my first day of pharmacy school. I could not have been more excited to begin my pharmacy career as a Buckeye. The first two weeks of school kept me busy with our Transitions module where we completed an array of activities designed to help us begin our P1 year with a sturdy professional foundation. The semester then began to build upon itself, with the courses becoming progressively more integrative and challenging as the weeks went on.

When summer came, I remained pretty busy, working full time at Mount Carmel West Hospital as an inpatient intern, and traveling to Honduras on a medical brigade with PODEMOS. Even though I was busy, I was doing things that I truly enjoyed.

This year, we are learning about the pharmacology, medicinal chemistry, therapeutics and pathophysiology associated with different disease states and a pharmacist’s role in managing them. The material is manageable but challenging at times.

I am now in my fourth semester of pharmacy school, and there have been moments where I’ve felt I don’t have enough time in the day to accomplish all of the things I need to do. At times I have felt overwhelmed and frayed. I knew I needed to incorporate more balance into my daily/weekly schedule, to help keep me energized and centered. I like to play tennis, use the facilities at the RPAC and read. I really enjoy exploring and experiencing the many delicious restaurants and coffee shops that Columbus has to offer with my friends. I have noticed such a difference in my overall happiness since I started doing more things that I enjoy. It’s nice to have something fun to work towards and look forward to at the end of a busy week.

My advice to you, Buckeyes and future Buckeyes, is this:

Amidst the hustle and bustle of Parks Hall, find your balance. Find your passion and go explore it. I strongly believe it is important to create balance in your lives, which will provide you with a more well-rounded and enjoyable pharmacy experience. Go Bucks!




SPOTLIGHT: Jorge Ng Zheng, PharmD/MBA and PLS

Hi everyone!

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

Jorge Ng Zheng

Why OSU: Joyce Zhang

It was June 14, 2015, and I was afraid.  I’m the planning type of person and I didn’t really have a plan.  I was boarding a plane for San Pedro Sula, Honduras, and in that moment I wondered, “What am I doing?”  A few months earlier, I stood at the intersection of Moral Dilemma Junction while I debated a vacation in Iceland versus a medical mission trip.  I hardly knew anyone else going to Honduras or how to take a blood pressure, and I didn’t know what to expect.

I’m a third-year PharmD student and a future pharmacist.  I’m also a sister, daughter, and friend.  I’m a midwesterner and a dog lover.  I am who I love and who loves me.  I’m a connector of people, a traveler, a learner.  I’m an idealistic, visionary sort, and I have an obsession with opportunity.  OSU College of Pharmacy has offered me opportunities beyond my dreams.  I didn’t know it when I boarded that plane to Honduras, but I am passionate about serving underprivileged, low-income populations.  I’ve since been to Honduras three times and Nicaragua once for medical brigades.  I’m leading my first medical brigade next month in March, and I’m going on my first surgical brigade in Ayacucho, Peru this June.

So me if you were to ask me, was Honduras what you expected?  I will probably say “No,” but if you were to ask me if it was worth it?  I would say “Holy yes!” to the things in life that are intangible and waiting to be experienced and learned.

I’m forever thankful for OSU College of Pharmacy for the chance to go abroad and learn to listen to and care for patients, practice cultural awareness, and work directly with talented, diverse, multidisciplinary teams.  Thanks, OSU, for letting me give back.  Thank you for letting me give an old man prednisone for his life-threatening temporal arteritis.  Give a woman the metformin she needs to control her diabetes but can’t afford.  Give a boy a warm touch, a smile to help him through the incision and drainage of a large abscess under his arm.  Thank you, OSU, for the opportunity to simply meet a little girl from El Progreso, Honduras, who has cerebral palsy.  This little girl, who I will love forever.

Dear prospective students, thank you for taking the time to look at our PharmD blog.  The OSU College of Pharmacy has over 20 different student organizations you can join to either actively pursue your passions or explore to find your passions.  Start reading about them here.

If you have any questions for me, please feel free to email me at!

Joyce Zhang is currently a third-year PharmD student at The Ohio State University. She enjoys volunteering at local free clinics, providing healthcare to underserved populations on medical brigades to Nicaragua and Honduras, photography, running and hiking, and drinking tea. She is currently president of Buckeyes Without Borders, president of the PharmD Class of 2018, a Student Ambassador Coordinator, and a member of Phi Lambda Sigma (PLS) leadership society, PODEMOS, and Kappa Psi.

Columbus in the Winter


If you are coming to Ohio from another city or state, you might be wondering what you may be able to do in Columbus during the Winter! As much as I would love to cuddle up with my puppy, I love getting out of my apartment and taking a break from studying. Columbus does offer so many different activities, but let me highlight some that I have done!

Columbus Winter Hike

One thing I love to do is hike! Being from Arizona, hiking was a mainstay activity in the winter. You can hike basically any time in the winter, and you will never worry about being too cold.

Ohio does a (long) series of winter hikes. I was very hesitant about hiking in Columbus in the winter. I love hiking during the summer, fall, and spring here, but really? The winter? Well, my boyfriend and I packed up our puppy, and went on a winter adventure. First of all, it was freezing cold (not surprising). Don’t make the same mistake that I did and wear tennis shoes — please be sure to wear warm boots with warm socks! To my surprise, there were so many people participating! It was great bringing my puppy, Cooper, because it allowed us to get to talk to so many people. At the end of the hike, we joined the celebration and drank some delicious hot cocoa. 🙂 It was definitely such a fun experience, but I will be definitely waiting for the hikes on warmer days! I would highly recommend to get your body moving after a long studying session, and a winter hike may be the perfect remedy. The cold definitely encouraged me to move faster 🙂

COSHP Wine Tasting

Each year, COSHP (Central Ohio Society of Health-System Pharmacists) puts together a wine tasting/networking event. Why is this event my favorite winter activity? You learn so much about different wines – this year the focus was on South American wines. You get to network and speak with many different health-system pharmacists around the Columbus area. You get to eat some delicious food where each course is paired with wine.

The main purpose of the wine tasting is to raise funds for PharmD scholarships! There are always a variety of baskets to bid on (and I always get outbid).

Unfortunately, I forgot to take a picture at the wine tasting this year, so I used the picture from last year!

COSHP Wine Tasting 2016

Yoga and Hockey

I recently attended a yoga class held at Nationwide Arena, and then the Columbus Blue Jackets game right after! Modo Yoga is a studio in Grandview area, and it is one of my favorite studios. It’s heated yoga, so going to a class in a cold environment was definitely something knew. So many people came out, and it was an amazing class. Unfortunately, the Blue Jackets lost that night, but the experience was awesome! I would highly recommend attending this event if happens again, and checking out Modo Yoga! Say hi to Chad and Elizabeth (owners of Modo Yoga) for me if you go. 🙂

By the cannon after yoga with Chad and Elizabeth


I hope you find some fun things to do in Columbus in the winter!

SPOTLIGHT: Mackenzie Harrell and NCPA

Hey Future Buckeyes!

Mackenzie Harrell is a third year pharmacy student who is passionate about community pharmacy and currently works at Kroger pharmacy. She currently serves as the NCPA President at OSU. See below to read about one of the many events students in NCPA can attend 🙂

This past October, the National Community Pharmacists Association student chapter at Ohio State traveled to New Orleans for the 2016 Annual Conference. The conference was an opportunity for students to attend programming to learn about community pharmacy, meet students from around the country that are interested in community pharmacy and to network with pharmacists who currently work in community pharmacy setting. There were 14 Ohio State College of Pharmacy students that attended the conference. We had the opportunity to learn about many things such as how to start your own pharmacy, new services being provided by pharmacists and the importance of a community pharmacist as an accessible health care professional for patients.  It was a great opportunity for students to exchange ideas about the chapter with other student pharmacists and to learn from experiences of currently practicing pharmacists.


We also had the opportunity to explore the city and the culture in New Orleans. We attended a pharmacy museum in the French Quarter, went on a group cemetery tour, ate many beignets and cheered on the Buckeyes with the New Orleans Ohio State Alumni Association. One of my favorite nights was when we had a chapter dinner which all students attended that included bowling with our awesome chapter advisor, Dr. Sullivan.

ncpa-bowling-dr-s \  ncpa-pharmacy-museum

We had two students win national scholarships through NCPA, Kristine Mason, 4th year student, and David Chen, third year student.


The conference concluded with a celebration including a live Jazz band, seafood dinner, tarot card readings and dancing. I think that national conference are a great way for students to strengthen their pharmacy experiences by gaining knowledge and making connections with pharmacists around the country. Furthermore, it is a great opportunity to spend time with classmates and further our passion of being pharmacists.


-Mackenzie Harrell


-Thanks for reading! As always feel free to contact me with any questions at 🙂


APhA-ASP Career Fair 2016

The Ohio State College of Pharmacy

2016 APhA-ASP Career Fair


Who: OSU College of Pharmacy students (BSPS and PharmD).  Door prizes will be available for P2-P4 students, and the event qualifies for PD hours!

What: Meet and network with pharmacy employers in Columbus!  Companies represented include: Companies attending include: Walmart, Rite Aid, Meijer, CVS Health, Walgreens, Express Scripts, Mount Carmel Health, Kroger, Ohio Society of Health-System Pharmacists, OSU Medication Management Program, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Giant Eagle, Eli Lilly, Mayo Clinic, Medpace, Ohio Health, and the Centers for Families and Children!

Opportunities for students to interview with employers will be available!  See below for more details about interviews.

Where: Nationwide & Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center: 2201 Fred Taylor Drive Columbus, OH 43210

When: Thursday September 1st, 2016 from 4:00-7:00 PM

Why: This is a great opportunity to explore what jobs Columbus has to offer pharmacy students.  Many different hospital and community pharmacies are represented at the Career Fair, and several conduct interviews (apply for an interview beforehand).  You can ask questions and learn about different internships and fellowships available to you.  Other benefits include:

  • Free food, free parking, raffles and prizes, and Professional Development (PD) hours
  • Both actual and mock interviews will be available
  • Students have received internships from their interactions with employers at the fair in the past
  • Provides an opportunity for students to practice their interviewing skills
  • Employers from areas of pharmacy including community, hospital, mail-order and industry will be present
  • It is a low pressure opportunity to network and interact with employers


Student RSVP:


Interview Information

Companies currently interviewing students:

  • P4 students only:
    • Walmart
    • Rite Aid
  • All students:
    • Meijer
    • CVS Health
    • Walgreens
    • Nationwide Children’s Hospital
    • Ohio Health (Only interviewing before the Career Fair from 1-3:30PM

All interviews (other than Ohio Health) will occur between 4:00 and 7:00 PM.  If you are interested in interviewing, please complete the steps below no later than Monday, August 22nd:

  1.     Go to and complete our online survey indicating your interests and availability for interviewing.
  2.     Upload your resume or CV to our Dropbox by visiting

General information about the interviews:

  • They will be conducted on-site at the 4H center
  • Interviews will last 30 minutes each, and will begin promptly at the time you are scheduled
  • Business professional attire is required
  • We will do our best to schedule interviews with employers that you are most interested in, but we cannot make any guarantees. Interviews will be assigned on a first come, first served basis.

You will receive your interview schedule no later than Thursday, August 25th.


If you have any questions, please email, Daniel Whitehouse at or visit

Can’t wait to see you there! 🙂

Joyce Zhang is currently a third-year PharmD student at The Ohio State University. She enjoys volunteering at local free clinics, providing healthcare to underserved populations on medical brigades to Nicaragua and Honduras, photography, running and hiking, and drinking tea. She is currently president of Buckeyes Without Borders, president of the PharmD Class of 2018, a Student Ambassador Coordinator, and a member of Phi Lambda Sigma (PLS) leadership society, American Pharmacists Association (APhA), Student National Pharmaceutical Association (SNPhA), and Kappa Psi.

Joyce Zhang is currently a third-year PharmD student at The Ohio State University. She enjoys volunteering at local free clinics, providing healthcare to underserved populations on medical brigades to Nicaragua and Honduras, photography, running and hiking, and drinking tea. She is currently president of Buckeyes Without Borders, president of the PharmD Class of 2018, a Student Ambassador Coordinator, and a member of Phi Lambda Sigma (PLS) leadership society, American Pharmacists Association (APhA), Student National Pharmaceutical Association (SNPhA), PODEMOS, and Kappa Psi.

White Coat Ceremony

Congratulations! You are now on your way to becoming a PharmD, but first you need something very important… Your White Coat! The white coat ceremony symbolizes your passage into the profession of pharmacy. It is one of the most important milestones in your career, as it celebrates all the hard work you’ve done up to this point.

As an incoming P1 you may be a little nervous about this upcoming ceremony, but I assure you there is nothing to be nervous about 🙂 For this event, you should wear professional attire such as a nice dress or slacks and a dress shirt. I recommend inviting those who mean the most to you such as parents, grandparents, family, and loved ones as this is a big step in your professional career and I’m sure they’d love to take part! For those celebrating from afar, the ceremony is recorded live so they can watch online.

The ceremony will start with a few speeches from various pharmacists and students explaining the importance of the day and congratulating you on your achievements. Following that, you will be receiving your white coat from your mentor (who you will meet soon 🙂 ). After all students receive their white coat, you will then recite the Oath of a Pharmacist, which is a professional oath to the field of pharmacy.

With that, I’ll end with HUGE congratulations to you all! I am so excited for you to join our wonderful profession and see all of the amazing opportunities Ohio State College of Pharmacy has to offer you. Have fun, don’t forget to take pictures, and GO BUCKS!