Pharmacy School Application Essay Format

Helpful Hints:
  • Do NOT personalize your essay for a particular pharmacy degree program. You CANNOT make any edits to your personal statement after you have e-submitted your completed application to PharmCAS.
  • Your personal statement should be no more than 4500 characters including spaces. If your statement is longer than that, you will not be able to save this section.
  • Prompt For Personal Essay: Your Personal Essay should address why you selected pharmacy as a career and how the Doctor of Pharmacy degree relates to your immediate and long-term professional goals. Describe how your personal, educational, and professional background will help you achieve your goals.

The personal essay is an important part of your application for admission and provides you with an opportunity for you to clearly and effectively express your ideas.

Enter a personal essay for each type of program you are applying to. Complete only the Pharm.D. essay if you are only applying to Pharm.D. programs, complete only the Graduate Program essay if you are only applying to graduate programs, and complete both if you are applying to both types of programs. (Please note that the personal essay section of the application will be checked as complete once you enter any one essay.)

You are encouraged to compose your essay in a text-only word processor (e.g., Notepad), review your essay for errors, then cut and paste the final version into the text box above. Click the Save button and then return to the Personal Essay to review the formatting of your text. You are limited to approximately 1 page (4500 characters, including spaces). Some formatting characters used in programs like Word (angled quotes, accents, special characters) will not display properly. Take care to review your final text and to make the necessary corrections to the format.

Each pharmacy degree program reserves the right to require additional essay responses as part of the supplemental application process.

You CANNOT make any edits to your Personal Essay after you have e-submitted your completed application to PharmCAS.

Please be aware that your admission essay may be subject to submission for textual similarity review to Turnitin for Admissions for the detection of plagiarism duplication and other potential violations of the applicant code of conduct. All submitted essays and other materials will be included as source documents in the Turnitin for Admissions reference database solely for the purpose of detecting plagiarism of such documents.

Expand All FAQ Questions

Q: What is plagiarism?

A: The Merriam-Webster online dictionary and plagiarism.org define plagiarism as:

  • to steal and pass off (the ideas or words of another) as one’ s own
  • to use (another’s productions) without crediting the source
  • to commit literary theft
  • to present as new and original an idea or product derived from an existing source

Plagiarism.org is a great source to learn about what plagiarism is and how to prevent it.

Q: What is Turnitin?

A: Turnitin is the online plagiarism checker used by PharmCAS to detect plagiarism in PharmCAS applicants’ personal statements. Turnitin scours the web to match content submitted by applicants to that found on web pages, archived student papers, and published articles. Matches are then documented into a Similarity Report. The Similarity Report shows what percentage of your personal statement matches content found on the web. When you apply through PharmCAS, your Similarity Report is provided to every degree program you apply to.

Turnitin.com will provide more information on how the service works and what you can expect.

Q: I applied through PharmCAS last application cycle. Can I use the same Personal Essay?

A: PharmCAS does NOT suggest using the same personal essay that you submitted to PharmCAS previously. Please create a new Personal Essay each time you apply through PharmCAS.

 



Pharmacy School Application Essay Writing Manual

You may not write many essays when you are a pharmacist, but if you want to become a pharmacist you need to get your typing fingers ready because you will be writing plenty of essays, beginning with the application essay. If you are a little nervous about writing the essay for admissions into pharmacy school, check out the following "must do's" to get your mind focused.


Get the admissions officer's attention.

The admission officer has to read a lot of applications, and your essay will be one of the many he or she may see in just one day. You need to stand out and make an impression, but make sure you do this in a positive manner. Don't show the admission officer a sloppy side of you by submitting an essay fraught with spelling errors and grammar issues. Always be professional and concise, and always edit your work. Aside from that, though, choose a story that will catch the officer's attention, or open with a tasteful joke that will make them sit up and pay attention immediately. Whatever you decide, show your personality and don't be too scared to try something new in the essay writing.


List your experiences.

Just like in a job interview, tell the admissions officer why you are someone they want at their school, not just someone that wants to be at their school. You need to high-light your skills and show the school you have the ambition to learn what they can teach you.


Talk about your passion for pharmaceuticals and people.

Pharmacy school is not about learning to fill medications and making lots of money. If you are aware of that, you need to tell the admissions officers that you are aware of that and then explain to them why you are passionate about pharmacy school and the field of pharmaceuticals. Always mention your love for helping people, because many pharmacists are called upon to work with people daily.


Research and organize.

Always list your points out before writing. List your anecdote or joke as your opening, then discuss your experiences and skills. Finally, mention your passion for pharmaceuticals and each of these points should reflect your own personality. If you need to quote articles or state any facts to back up your points, thoroughly research these before listing them so that you can show you are accurate and good at doing research. This works great in a college setting where many professors are more concerned with showing that you can research rather than showing off what you know.

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