Thursday, April 24, 2008

FAMU Partners with Parks Pharmacy, Inc. to Provide Entrepreneurial Opportunities for FAMU Graduates

Florida A&M University joins forces with Parks Pharmacy, Incorporated to provide entrepreneurial opportunities for FAMU graduates to own and manage an independent community pharmacy.

Additionally, this partnership with Parks Pharmacy, Inc. and the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences (COPPS) will establish a scholarship fund and a Community Pharmacy Residency Program that will fund two (2) residency positions focusing on community pharmacy practice and advancing state-of-the-art pharmaceutical care in a community pharmacy setting.

“This mutual agreement between FAMU, the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, and Parks Pharmacy is designed to establish the M.B. Coleman Scholarship Fund, named after the grandmother of Demetrius Parks, owner and CEO of Parks Pharmacy, Inc., headquartered in Montgomery, Alabama,” said Henry Lewis III, dean and professor of COPPS.

This is the first entrepreneurial program of this nature for FAMU graduates to actively participate in economic development activities. In addition, Parks Pharmacies will serve as a community clerkship-training site for

current students enrolled in the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Lewis believes this is a phenomenal opportunity because so few minority pharmacists own and operate independent community pharmacies.

“With more than 900 independent drug stores closing annually, this partnership will help reverse the trend particularly for minority practitioners,” said Lewis.

“I am excited about working with Dean Lewis and the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences,” said Demetrius Y. Parks, R.Ph., owner/CEO Parks Pharmacy, Incorporated. “My vision is to change the direction of pharmacy so that more pharmacies are independently owned and operated. This program is uniquely designed to assist minority pharmacists with financial options that will enable them to build, startup, operate, and local pharmacies.”

“The collaboration with Parks Pharmacy is an excellent opportunity for pharmaceutical entrepreneurship,” said Angela Hill, professor and director of COPPS Pharmacy Practice.

“This is an excellent opportunity for us as we continue to expand post-graduate training experiences for our students,” said Michael Thompson, professor and assistant dean for Clinical Affairs. “I am delighted that Parks has decided to partner with us on such an innovative venture.”

Photo caption: (from left to right) Demetrius Parks, owner and CEO of Parks Pharmacy, Inc., FAMU President James H. Ammons and Dean Henry Lewis, III, College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, signed the Memorandum of Understanding which will establish the partnership between Florida A&M University and the Parks Pharmacy, Inc.

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