The School employs a developmental approach to advising within the PharmD program – realizing each student is a unique person, student, and scholar. Faculty advisors serve as coaches, mentors, and advocates as students aim to maximize their growth and development over a 4-year PharmD experience. The School subscribes to the National Academic Advising Association definition of advising:
“Academic advising is an educational process that, by intention and design, facilitates students’ understanding and the meaning and purpose of higher education, and fosters their intellectual and personal development towards academic success and lifelong learning.”
Academic advising, coaching, and mentoring concerns itself with academic performance, student satisfaction, and quality of student life. Additionally within this School, the advising relationship focuses intently on helping PharmD students plan and make meaning of value-added co-curricular experiences. At the beginning of the program, students are placed into “Pharmalies” – advising familes – in an effort to build community. Three faculty advisors and six peer mentors are paired with students in each Pharmily. Pharmalies engage in consistent and on-going interactions throughout the first three years of study. Pharmalies are a means to:
- Monitor quality of experience trends that may require attention
- Take care of/look out for each other and to promote collective well-being by building strong networks of support and advocacy
- To collectively share learning and experiences with each other and to build upon them as a group
Academic advising, mentoring, and coaching closely intersects with the School’s Co-Curricualar Pathway framework as students and advisors collaborate to identify “co-curricular commitments” and make meaning of involvement after the fact (see the Co-Curriculum section for details). These interactions occur both in-person and virtually/digitally.