Sunday, April 22, 2012

Lo Chi Pride


For the uninitiated, Rho Chi is the organization that rewards those who academically perform well in pharmacy school, and then grant them with acceptance into their prestigious organization.

When starting pharmacy school, it is presented to you as one of the crowning achievements of your academic career. It is only when you finally become buried in the life of a pharmacy student that you realize what an actual farce this is.

In my experience, those who are in Rho Chi typically don't know what the hell they're talking about in practical situations. Sure they can recite every side effect of lamotrigine and they may know proper UHF dosing guidelines in a patient with VTE or ACS... provided everything is answered on a scan-tron form.

In a real world setting, most often emulated via our case studies, these successful "methods" no longer apply. Therapeutic suggestions are aimlessly justified because of what it said in a slide. Or, even worse, they won't know what a specific agent is or does, as they merely memorized it for the exam.

These are the "elite" pharmacy students we are told we should strive to be. It is the first of many seemingly unimportant carrots that are dangled in front of us as burgeoning pharmacy students.

Yes, this is a generalization and there are several Rho Chi members who do not fit this mold, but it still does not change my belief on the illegitimacy of defining success in this manner. As practitioners, we will not see success because of our ability to remember minute details, we will see success based upon our ability to logically apply our knowledge in practical situations

So you know what, I'm damn proud to be part of Lo Chi.

I may occasionally meet the average for exams, and even more rarely exceed it, but at the end of the day I know that I will still be a damn good practitioner.. perhaps one better than those Rho Chi members.

For the rest of you exhausted pharmers, aching for the end of the semester I say raise a glass of your favorite booze/caffeinated substance and toast the recognition of the most truly glorious organization in pharmacy school.

Lo Chi Pride!


Anonymous said...

I am in Rho Chi and I tend to agree with much of what you wrote with regards to many of my colleagues and even myself.

I have worked to get over the 'memorize these details for a test' mentality and am doing much better with case studies and seminars as a result. Real world application is nothing like pick a, b, c, or d on a scantron.

was1 said...

you sound like an underachiever trying to rationalize his underachievement by saying that the achievers are less capable than you even though they 'appear' to be better and brighter. dangerous territory, my friend.

Anonymous said...

Says the guy who will be counting by fives for the rest of his life. Not much is needed in the community setting. Get off your soap box.

I enjoyed reading your blog, but now I will just see you as a bitter piece of sh*t.


Anonymous said...

Hit it on the nail

Frank said...

I literally read it as Loki, brother of Thor. :D But, congratulations, though! My brother's an aspiring pharmacist and he goes just about the same thing as you do.

Online Pharmacy said...

I know I’m protected by a legion of staff, and somehow this cheap white coat seems to protect me from being actively abused (if not lied to)…so all of this to say I’m sorry for how badly my colleagues treat you, how badly my patients treat you, and again if you have some more to say to us docs I’d be grateful. I’ll keep trying not to make your life worse.

Anonymous said...

This is what's wrong with pharmacy. Do you see medical students talking down to their peers who get honors in many of their classes, AOA, and high USMLE scores? No, scholarship and research is encouraged.

Then we have people like you cluttering up pharmacy with your "omg you have good grades that doesn't mean anything, maybe it means you're stupid" or "oh you have good grades? I can't hire you because you must be cutthroat and socially inept" crap. People like you go on to hire more people like you and we end up with more and more idiots in the field.

Are there book smart people who can't apply what they learned to real case situations? Yes. Is every student who makes good grades that type of student? No.

This post was bad and you should feel bad.

Oh, for the record, yes this post pissed me off. Why? I'm in Rho Chi. In fact, I've gotten entirely A+s and As since I started. I'm not perfect. I'm a little socially awkward but patients still like me and I try pretty damn hard to excel while balancing work, research, and leadership. It grinds my gears that people will give me crap because of my GPA and deign to assume that I'm super retarded and can't apply myself to real world situations. It just...doesn't make any sense. At all.

One shouldn't have to feel ostracized or unrecognized because of their grades. I've actually considered lowering my GPA from a 4.0+ to a 3.8 on purpose for my CV or not including it at all because I know there are a lot of people like you out there in the pharmacy world. That would be unheard of in fields like engineering and medicine.

Just a Staff Pharmacist said...

LOL, this post is hilarious. What you say is pretty much spot on with the information schools test you on being useless for most pharmacists at work.

However, good grades do make it easier to get hired for the first job.