Victorian Pharmacy Student of the Year

La Trobe University student Rebecca Boschert has won this year’s Victorian Pharmacy Student of the Year competition and will represent the state at the national finals in October.

Amy-Waldron-and-Rebecca-Boschert-250Ms Boschert (pictured right), who is originally from Ballarat, is a final year student in the Bachelor of Pharmacy with Honours at La Trobe University’s Bendigo Campus.

She said the competition involved a role play in which a patient complains of a migraine. ‘It was my job to determine what the issue was and to recommend a treatment,’ said Ms Boschert. ‘So it wasn’t just about demonstrating clinical knowledge, but also being able to communicate with the patient.

‘The competition is well known amongst pharmacists, so I’m delighted to have won the Victorian competition. I’m nervous about the upcoming national finals, but it’s exciting to have the opportunity to compete.

‘The Bachelor of Pharmacy course at La Trobe really focuses on patient-centred care and on communicating clearly. This training was essential for me to succeed in this competition, and is absolutely vital if I’m to be a good pharmacist,’ Ms Boschert said.

Ms Boschert has gained a place in the pharmacy intern program at the Royal Melbourne Hospital for 2014. At the end of the 12-month internship program, she will be fully qualified as a pharmacist and hopes to return to regional Victoria to live and work if possible.

Another La Trobe University student, Amy Waldron (pictured above left), also did exceptionally well as one of the four finalists who competed for the Victorian Student of the Year title.

La Trobe University students have won the competition six times in the last seven years.

Professor Brian McGaw, Executive Dean of the Faculty of Science, Technology and Engineering, said ‘we are very proud of the achievements of our pharmacy students in doing so well in the Pharmacy Student of the Year competition.

‘The competition recognises the wide range of the skills of our final year students. Their success shows that not only do they have exceptional levels of clinical knowledge, but also that they are able to communicate this knowledge clearly and effectively.’

Competition judge Michael Scavone said that the finalists had performed exceptionally well, and had further lifted the standard from last year’s competition.

The Pharmacy Student of the Year competition is run by the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia, and aims to challenge final year students in the skills of patient interaction, communication, counselling techniques and thinking analytically under pressure.

The winner of the national competition receives a grant to use towards a professional development opportunity.

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