Posted on December 01, 2010

Qatar University's College of Pharmacy (CPH) is preparing to enrol students in its new advanced degree programs scheduled to start in Fall 2011. The application process to the Master of Science in Pharmacy (MSc Pharm) and Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) degree programs will start in January.

The announcement was made by CPH Dean Dr Peter Jewesson on Monday at a press conference which included CPH Associate Dean of Academic Affairs Dr Sherief Khalifa, Assistant Professor and Founding Chair of Pharmaceutical Sciences Dr Husam Younes, and Assistant Professor and Director Doctor of Pharmacy Program Dr Kerry Wilbur.

"The programs will be the first of their kind in Qatar," Dr Jewesson noted. He added that the establishment of the programs was in line with the Emir's statement in the National Vision 2030 for more advanced academic programs including those in healthcare. "They are also aligned with observations expressed in the Supreme Health Council's report Post-secondary Education in Qatar," he said, adding, "likewise in QU's Strategic Plan and the Pharmacy College strategic plan to respond to the needs of the state for quality postgraduate degree program in areas of national priority." It is further aligned with international standards identified by the Canadian Council for the Accreditation of Pharmacy Programs, to which the College is accredited, Dr Jewesson stated.

Importantly, the programs provide women in Qatar who are unable to travel abroad for further education with the opportunity to pursue top-quality postgraduate studies in a rewarding profession that is very accommodating to both genders, he added.

The MSc Pharm program is a minimum 2-year, 33-credit hour thesis-based research-oriented program which will prepare students for research and teaching positions in medical and healthcare institutions and academia. The PharmD degree will be offered in two parallel streams. Students who have completed the BSc (Pharm) 173-credit hour program can continue on to complete a further 36-credit hour full time course requirement towards this degree. The program is also offered on a part-time basis for practicing Qatar pharmacists with an approved BSc (Pharm) degree from another university. Graduates of the PharmD program will be equipped for the delivery and evaluation of pharmaceutical care and will help advance the practice of pharmacy in Qatar.

"We are very market-sensitive," Dr Jewesson stated, "the country demands highly- qualified healthcare practitioners and researchers and we are responding to the challenge by establishing quality programs and producing competent well-trained graduates."

He also noted that during their academic studies, undergraduate and graduate pharmacy students will have the opportunity for hands-on experience with the College's partners and collaborators.

"The College will partner with several groups towards the delivery of its degree programs including Supreme Council of Health, Hamad Medical Corporation, Sidra Medical & Research Center, Ebn Sina Medical, Boots, IMC, and others," Dr Jewesson said.