For the 9th year in a row CVS Pharmacy and Ferris State College of Pharmacy have teamed up to give local high school students fantastic opportunities. This past summer selected Rockford, Comstock Park and Big Rapids students have had the wonderful opportunity to be involved in a program that gives high school students opportunities they normally would never have had for career development and experience. Nine local area students were selected, among a highly rigorous application process, for this 6 week summer internship experience. Students worked along side pharmacists in 9 local CVS Pharmacies to gain knowledge about patient counseling, medicine, drug interactions, dispensing, insurance and formulations. The last 2 weeks were spent up at Ferris State College of Pharmacy doing research with Dr. Tracey Boncher on drug design, synthesis and development of better type II diabetic agents. Students were not only able to see how research is conducted but also get to understand all that goes into trying to find better treatments for diseases such as diabetes. Dr. Boncher’s research has recently made some significant strides in advancing drug discovery for type II and a recent publication can be found in the journal entitled Bio-organic and Medicinal Chemistry Letters.
All students presented a formal presentation in Grand Rapids to pharmacists, faculty, parents and national representatives from CVS Pharmacy. Many have now been hired on part-time through CVS Pharmacy to assist in the pharmacy while finishing their high school education. This experience has helped advance the career of many previous students enrolled in this program in past years and many end up pursuing pharmacy or medical career paths. More recently, Chris Newell (Rockford-previous program student), Chad Henry (Rockford-previous program student) and Aaron Aniszko (Rockford-Previous program student) are all in their 2nd year of the professional Pharm.D. curriculum pursuing their dreams of becoming a future pharmacist and Jake Chaffee (Rockford-Previous program student) is this years P1 student from the program. Additional intern students are also enrolled at Ferris and other schools finishing their pre-pharmacy requirements before applying to pharmacy school.