By Lori Maricle, College of Pharmacy
Shauna Leggett and Haleigh Miller are crushing it when it comes to their plans to become pharmacists.
Leggett and Miller, both in the class of 2018, are Washington State University students in the Doctor of Pharmacy program. This last December, they participated in a national pharmacy clinical skills competition organized by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP).
ASHP is a professional organization representing the interests of pharmacists who practice in hospitals, health maintenance organizations, long-term care facilities, home care, and other types of health systems.
As part of the ASHP Midyear Clinical Meeting and Exhibition in Orlando, Florida, the skills competition provides student pharmacists the opportunity to develop and practice collaborative patient care as part of a health care team. Student pharmacists work through scenarios for hospital- and health-system-based pharmacists.
“We were initially apprehensive,” Leggett said. “Neither of us had competed in prior years. When we got to the national competition and realized we had a good idea of how to approach the case, it was exciting. The curriculum at WSU and our rotation experience during fourth year prepared us very well, which reflects well on our educational experience.”
There were 135 teams from across the country who participated. The WSU duo placed fourth overall and each received an iPad as a prize for being in the top 10 finalists.
“We are so proud of Shauna and Haleigh and how they represented the college at this event,” Vice-Dean Linda Garrelts MacLean said.
Shauna Leggett is from West Richland, Washington, and completed her undergraduate coursework at Whitworth University in Spokane. After graduation, she plans to apply for a pharmacy residency in order to work as a hospital pharmacist. Leggett hopes to stay in the Pacific Northwest and work in a community hospital.
Haleigh Miller is from Spokane, Washington, and completed her undergraduate coursework at WSU. In addition to pharmacy school, Miller has worked an intern at Providence Holy Family Hospital since 2015. After graduation she also plans to complete a post-graduate residency in acute care.
“I really enjoy acute care because pharmacists get to work directly with other healthcare professionals and utilize their clinical knowledge to improve patient care,” Miller said. “My favorite part of the ASHP clinical skills competition was getting to apply the knowledge that I have gained.”
Providing these types of opportunities for students to engage and gain recognition nationally is an example of how the WSU College of Pharmacy is dedicated to advancing human health through clinical education in its Doctor of Pharmacy program, and its commitment to developing outstanding health care professionals and scientists.