Where Will they Land?
The South Carolina College of Pharmacy (SCCP) continues to blister the national average in residency match success.
On Match Day 2015 (March 20), 43 of the 56 SCCP students who applied were placed in programs repreresenting 16 states, landing in some highly prestigious residency programs. The SCCP has matched close to 80 percent of its students seeking residencies for five straight years, compared to a national average around 55-60 percent.
The total residents represented around 23 percent of the student body and included multiple students at two programs, 14 students among all eight in-state programs, three students in community residency programs, and one student in a coveted veterinary pharmacy program (only one of its kind).
For those on social media, the College used #SCCPMatch2015 to track/post match results live on Twitter.
The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) runs a matching program in which an algorithm matches interested residencies with student-preferred placements. In 2015, 5,373 applicants enrolled in the post-graduate year one (PGY1) match program and 4,358 applicants entered the match (with approximately 3,000 positions available for PGY1).
For the last five years, the number of applicants has risen in increments of 500 while available placements have risen in increments of around 200.
“In the dynamic pharmacy job market and expanding service roles for pharmacists, I feel residency training will continue to move towards a standard as the next step in the pharmacy education and training process.” said Brandon Bookstaver, vice chair of clinical pharmacy and outcomes sciences at the SCCP.
Many employers in health-system pharmacy strongly prefer residency experience and increasingly community pharmacists – the pharmacist at the corner store – expect it as well. PGY1 programs offer general post-graduate training and some residents go on to a post-graduate year two (PGY2) or fellowship program that is typically more specialized.
At least 27 SCCP alumni followed up their PGY1 residency by successfully matching for a PGY2 this year.
The College’s success in placing residents reflects an emphasis on preparation.
“That our students do so well is certainly a reflection of their outstanding ability and a testament to our faculty mentors and preceptors,” Bookstaver said. Bookstaver and SCCP assistant professor Celeste Rudisill-Caulder, along with two others, published Roadmap to Postgraduate Training in Pharmacy in 2013. “Our pre-residency track has created a roadmap for success in achieving a successful match.”