The phrase ‘summer camp,’ typically evokes images of swimming, sports, bonfires, and cabins – but at the University of South Carolina, youth summer camps offer an exciting glimpse into academic subjects from forensic science to oceanography to 3D printing and more.
Sparking interest and inspiring a quest for knowledge in young learners is at the heart of UofSC’s Carolina Master Scholars Adventure Series. This nationally recognized, award-winning program provides both residential and commuter campers an immersive college-like experience.
[Adventures in Pharmacy camp] helped me prepare for my future career by seeing a broader aspect of the health science field.
As part of the series, faculty and staff at the College of Pharmacy have taught the popular Adventures in Pharmacy program for rising 9-12 grade students since 2008. Over the course of a week, participants learn how to read prescriptions, compound medications, counsel patients, understand poison warnings and more.
Following a year off due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s camp held June 20-25 welcomed 12 students back to in-person campus activities.
“Camp was different this year,” says Kathy Quarles Moore, R.Ph., program instructor and director of the Community and Compounding Laboratories at the UofSC College of Pharmacy. “We followed social distancing protocols and the campers and faculty were masked.”
The enhanced safety protocols did not hinder students’ enjoyment of the lessons.
One participant highly recommends the camp to her peers. “It teaches a lot about the different branches of pharmacy and has fun hands-on activities.”
“It gave me more insight into whether pharmacy is something I want to pursue in the future by discussing the numerous fields of pharmacy and what life as a pharmacist might be like,” said another student. “It was interactive, fun and informative.”
The people who spoke to us had very cool things to say and this week gave me a better understanding of what pharmacy is and what pharmacists can do.
UofSC's College of Pharmacy has a rich history of preparing students to enter a world of professional practice, research, pharmaceutical industry, and beyond. Throughout the camp, students are exposed to more than 30 different pharmacy career pathways.
“On day one, when I ask who is interested in pharmacy as a career, about half of the class will raise their hands. Then on day four, I ask the same questions and almost all the students raise their hands,” says Quarles Moore. “I enjoy watching the high school students open up and ask great questions about pharmacy topics that are being presented.”
Whether camp participants go on to pursue a pharmacy degree or another career path, they take with them a broadened notion of the Pharm.D. degree and the achievement of successfully completing their adventure in pharmacy.