Louisville area colleges, high schools work to fill pharmacy shortage

Published: Nov. 16, 2021 at 5:44 PM EST|Updated: Nov. 16, 2021 at 7:24 PM EST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - There is an ongoing push to replace the dwindling workforce at the pharmacy counter.

Steps are being taken in higher education to strengthen students’ chances of entering the pharmacy field, including at Indiana University Southeast and Sullivan University, where a new partnership was forged Tuesday. The two created a program that will allow incoming freshman to graduate with a doctorate degree in pharmacy in less than five years, which could help fill the staffing gap happening at pharmacies.

“It is going to allow for students who are entering into college that know that the health sciences, healthcare is for them to move them at a quicker pace,” Sullivan University Professor Cassandra Hobbs said.

While Sierra Keese is just a high school senior at Marion C. Moore School now, within days she will enter her dream job as a pharmacist at Walgreen’s.

“My uncle has a best friend that’s in pharmacy, so when I told him that I was interested in pharmacy, he is telling me about all that,” JCPS High School Senior Sierra Keese said. “How there has been a shortage in pharmacists. … Having the people to give the vaccines and provide the stuff are really important right now.”

Lomae Martinez, like Keese, was unaware of the national pharmacy’s opportunity until their teacher, Scott Rouse, pushed them. He said he is proud of his students for having the opportunity to choose a career path so early.

“They will be working the in the pharmacy a minimum of four hours per week,” Rouse said.

Copyright 2021 WAVE 3 News. All rights reserved.