FREQUENTLY ASKED ADMISSION QUESTIONS 2014-2015

Number of applications for admission:     156 (average of past 4 years)

Number of students accepted for each class:      60

Average GPA for all applicants:                 3.360 (average for past 4 years)

Average GPA for admitted students:        3.554 (average for past 4 years)

Minimum GPA:        No set minimum, but applicants need a GPA of at least 3.0 to be considered competitive

Application Deadline:    PharmCAS - January 6, 2015; UNMC Supplemental - February 15, 2015

 

PCAT required?   Yes...completion of the Pharmacy College Admission Test is required.  We will accept test scores that were taken within the past 3 years.  There is no minimum PCAT score requirement; however, the average composite score for those admitted in 2009 through 2013 was 66.

 

PharmCAS?  Yes...see www.pharmcas.com

 

What dates should I be aware of in the Admissions Process Timeline?

  • See "Pharm.D. Application Process & Instructions" document for specific steps and dates.
  • Review of complete applications(verified PharmCAS plus submitted UNMC Supplemental) will begin in September.  Selected applicants are invited for interview and admissions decisions will be made on a continual basis, starting in late fall, until the class is filled (by April).  Students are encouraged to apply early to ensure themselves the best opportunity for acceptance.
  • Communications offering admission, notification of alternate status or notification of "not admit" status will be sent as soon as decisions are finalized in the 'rolling admissions' system.  All applicants will be notified by electronic messaging (or letter) of their status.  No information will be released by phone.  All applicants will be notified of their status by April at the latest.

What sources of information are utilized by the Admissions Committee in assessing applicants?

  • Academic performance in all coursework taken after high school with particular attention given to grades received in math and sciences.  Patterns of course withdrawals and course repeats are also considered.
  • Statements on the PharmCAS Personal Statement and the COP Supplemental Application Personal Questionnaire (http://net.unmc.edu/apply/phar_sup.asp)
  • Statements made by references in Letters of Evaluation
  • Applicant's initiative to explore various pharmacy practice environments (i.e. shadowing, part-time work)
  • Applicant's participation in extracurricular and leadership activities either on campus or in the community
  • Applicant's communication skills as demonstrated during the interview and all writing exercises 

Credits not considered applicable toward meeting prerequisites?

  • The Associate Dean for Student Affairs and the Admissions Committee will determine the applicability of transferred credits on an individual basis.  Credits must be earned at a fully accredited institution of higher learning.
  • Credits not considered applicable include:  (1) Those graded less than “C”, “I” (incomplete), “W” (withdrawal), or audit; (2) Those completed but not given for credit (pass/fail);   (3) Activity courses in physical education.
  • Per UNMC policy, no more than 66 hours may be accepted from the community college level toward prerequisites.
  • It is preferred by the Curriculum Committee of the UNMC COP that the following hours be completed at a 4-year institution vs. community college (especially in light of the limit on community college hours accepted)
    • Organic Chemistry (8 hours)
    • Biochemistry (3 hours)
    • Quantitative Chemical Analysis (4 hours)
    • Molecular Biology (3 hours)
    • Anatomy (4 hours) *
    • Physiology (4 hours) *
      • A full year (at least 8 hours) of combined Anatomy & Physiology may be substituted for separate Anatomy & Physiology courses
      • Anatomy & Physiology completed at the community college level will not be accepted toward meeting the prerequisite above.

How do graduates of the University of Nebraska College of Pharmacy fare on national board exams?     Students graduating from our program perform well on both NAPLEX (North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination) and MPJE (Multistate Pharmacy Jurisprudence Examination).

  • For NAPLEX, our students’ pass rate in recent years has ranked the program very highly among reporting schools across the country.  For the five year period (2009 thru 2013), our students achieved a 100% pass rate with scores consistently averaging well above the national averages.  For 2012 & 2013, the UNMC COP was among only 7 of 115 reporting schools with students achieving a 100% pass rate for both years.
  • For the pharmacy law exam (MPJE), our students have achieved a pass rate of greater than 99.85% over the same five year period which also ranks our program in the top 10 of reporting schools across the country.  As with NAPLEX, for 2012 & 2013, the UNMC COP was among only 3 of 99 reporting schools with 100% pass rate for both years.

As an applicant to a health professions program, am I subject to any type of Background Check or other required disclosure of information regarding a conviction or other legal proceedings against me?

  • All students enrolling in UNMC professional programs are required to complete Background Checks since healthcare facilities where students complete clinical experiences require such checks in order to meet various legal requirements.  Agreement to participate in random drug screening may also be required.
    • UNMC participates in the PharmCAS Background Check program.  The offer of admission triggers the process via Certiphi.  The cost of this background check is incorporated into the PharmCAS application fee.
    • In addition to the initial check, local “re-screen” checks are also required upon entry and at midpoint during the professional program as many experiential sites require updated reviews as well as very specific ‘abuse registry’ documentation when students are caring for vulnerable patient populations (i.e. pediatrics, geriatrics).
    • Information received by the COP as part of the background check is confidential and will be available ONLY to the Associate Dean or his/her designee for evaluation of suitability for full admission or experiential participation.
    • A positive response on background check or drug screening will not necessarily result in a detrimental effect on enrollment, but an interview or further interaction/evaluation may be required.

What about Financial Aid and Scholarships?

  • The UNMC Office of Financial Aid administers a variety of financial aid programs.  The UNMC Financial Aid website provides many answers about financing a UNMC education and is referenced in the admissions process for completion of appropriate paperwork. 
  • The College of Pharmacy administers a significant number of scholarships which are granted based upon academic performance, leadership, extracurricular involvement and/or a combination of these criteria.  In fall 2013, greater than $600,000 in awards was distributed to pharmacy students. 

Where do I live when I enroll in the College of Pharmacy?         The University of Nebraska Medical Center does not have residence halls, but owns a variety of rental property units which can be leased to students.  Please visit the Student Housing site for more information.

 

I graduated 8 years ago from college but am thinking about returning to pursue a pharmacy degree.  Will the science and math classes I took 8-10 years ago count toward my prerequisites?           In many cases, they will not, but every student’s previous history is evaluated on a case-by-case basis.  We want every student to be successful, so, given the emphasis in our program on a strong, current foundation in science and math, the Admissions Committee generally recommends that coursework greater than five (5) years old in the science and math areas should be refreshed (i.e. especially organic chemistry & physiology).  Older coursework will be considered toward meeting prerequisites in most other areas.

 

Do you accept students from other states?     Our focus as a state school is on educating pharmacists for Nebraska.  Accordingly, the majority (at least 75%) of our admitted students are Nebraska residents with the remainder typically being students from immediately surrounding states or those with ties to Nebraska.  As we expand our applicant pool with the utilization of PharmCAS, it is anticipated that a greater number of qualified students from outside our borders will be considered for admission to our program.  Non-Resident Tuition Scholarships that waive a significant amount of the difference between resident and non-resident tuition are available and help to reduce tuition costs to more manageable levels.

 

Who can I talk to for further information or for questions that I have?     General requirements and information are available on the College of Pharmacy website.  For further information, please contact the College of Pharmacy Dean’s Office at 402-559-4333 or via email at copadmin@unmc.edu.

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