UNC to Offer Dual Degree in Pharmacy, Business

The UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy and Kenan-Flagler Business School have come together to offer a dual-degree program that will allow pharmacy students to earn a doctorate in pharmacy and an MBA in five years.

“Given the quality and standing of the two schools involved, this certainly has the potential to be the foremost PharmD/MBA program in the country,” said Robert Blouin, dean of the pharmacy school. Thirty-eight similar programs were offered in the U.S. in 2010, according the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy.

Graduates who hold both degrees often pursue careers in the pharmaceutical industry, health care management or as entrepreneurs in community pharmacy and command higher salaries than other PharmD graduates on average. Over the past two years, 10 to 20 percent of the approximately 150 members of UNC’s incoming pharmacy class have expressed an interest in a PharmD/MBA program.

“This program reflects a growing need in the health care industry for people who can both make effective clinical decisions and exercise fiscal and managerial responsibility,” said James W. Dean Jr., dean of Kenan-Flagler.

This is the seventh dual-degree program for Kenan-Flagler Business School and the first for the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy.

Admission to the program requires students to apply to and be accepted by both the Pharm. and the MBA programs. Up to five pharmacy students each year will be permitted to enroll in the dual-degree program.

The curriculum requires five years to complete. Students will begin the PharmD program and complete the first two years, then apply to the MBA program in the fall of their second year. Successful candidates will spend their third year entirely in the MBA program, then complete a combination of MBA and pharmacy coursework in the fourth year. The fifth year is spent in pharmacy-practice rotations across the state.

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