When Jenn Wilson is working part-time at a retail pharmacy, she relishes the times she gets out from behind the counter. “My favorite time working is spent out in the aisles helping to answer patient questions,” she says.
Wilson, an assistant professor in the School of Pharmacy, is passionate about her profession, and she can often be found promoting pharmacy through state and national organizations. Much of the committee work she does for these organizations focuses on promoting the customer-service aspects of pharmacy. She says that too often society underestimates what pharmacists can do.
“I think the last stat I heard said that there were over 250 different pharmacy positions. It is so much more than what people generally first think,” Wilson says. “We are really trying to push our profession to be more service-driven versus just product-driven, as we have been for so long. Pharmacists are among the most accessible of all healthcare providers.”
Wilson is particularly passionate about self-care — using over-the-counter medications, products and supplements — and how pharmacists can help patients decide what options may work for them.
Named a 2016 Distinguished Young Pharmacist by the Pharmacists Mutual Companies last fall, Wilson has chaired North Carolina Association of Pharmacists committees on community-care practice and education and has worked with the American Pharmacists Association on issues such as diabetes. She’s served on more than a dozen professional committees over the past five years, while also taking on roles with her church, homeowners’ association and college alumni groups. She also works at the Wingate University Wellness Center.
“I have been known to perhaps overdo it on an occasion. My friends and family would say ‘no’ is not really in my vocabulary,” says the energetic Ohio native. “I constantly tell my students how important it is to be involved, and I think it is also important to model that behavior.”
Her work at the Wellness Center gives her plenty of “modeling” opportunities. That’s where, three mornings each week, Wilson and her pharmacy students offer to faculty and staff members annual wellness checks that she says are “similar to a mini-physical, where we talk about diet, exercise, sleep, medical history and other wellness parameters.” They check cholesterol, blood sugar, blood pressure, height, weight and waist measurements and offer patient education on ways to improve health or stay healthy.
Beyond the center and the classroom, Wilson also works with students as faculty co-advisor to Phi Lambda Sigma Leadership Honorary Society and Kappa Epsilon Professional Fraternity. A member of the WU faculty since 2012, she was named faculty advisor of the year for 2014-2015.
“Part of Wingate University’s appeal as a faculty member is the emphasis on students,” Wilson says. “Serving as a faculty advisor really provides another opportunity for me to get to know my students outside of the classroom and help foster their desire to be active and involved.”
Wilson is a 2010 graduate of Raabe College of Pharmacy at Ohio Northern University. WU pharmacy students are likely to encounter her in classes such as Introduction to Pharmaceutical Care, Over-the-counter Pharmacotherapy, Immunizations Training and Problem-Based Learning.
Learn more about what the Wingate University School of Pharmacy has to offer.
Feb. 1, 2017