The Gamecock Pharmacy Assurance pathway at the University of South Carolina is a unique
initiative designed for exceptional high school students who are considering pursuing
a career in pharmacy.
The GPA pathway is an early assurance pathway intended to recruit students who have
achieved academic distinction by issuing a provisional early acceptance into the
Doctor of Pharmacy program at South Carolina.
Candidates who are admitted into the GPA pathway and adhere to the maintenance requirements
by the specified deadlines matriculate into the Pharm.D. program at the beginning
of their third collegiate year without having to participate in the traditional pharmacy
school admissions process.
The structure of the GPA pathway allows students to explore the profession of pharmacy,
while strengthening knowledge and skills to be successful in the Doctor of Pharmacy
GPA pathway students are encouraged to engage in the abundant opportunities that are
offered at the College of Pharmacy and throughout the university campus to form lasting friendships and acclimate themselves to college life.
In addition to all of the advantages provided to traditional pathway Pre-Pharmacy
students, students in the GPA pathway also receive exclusive benefits including:
Notification of acceptance into the Pharm.D. program two years earlier than standard
Assured acceptance into the Pharm.D. program pending adherence to all maintenance
Ability to better prepare for the rigors of the Pharm.D. program by focusing on pharmacy
prerequisite and preparation courses rather than the admissions process
Professional, pharmacy, and leadership skill-building experiences through completion
of courses such as University 101 and Introduction to Pharmacy in the U.S.
Eligibility for membership on select College of Pharmacy Committees
Elimination of the need to apply to multiple Pharm.D. programs, avoiding unnecessary
The application to the Gamecock Pharmacy Assurance pathway is separate from your application
to the University of South Carolina.
The GPA pathway application will be on the student admission portal for students who
meet the eligibility criteria; in addition, an email invitation will be sent:
Indicate B.S. in Pharmaceutical Sciences (Pre-Pharmacy) as first or second choice major or
indicate a professional interest in pharmacy.
Earn a minimum cumulative high school grade point average of 3.5.
Students invited to apply for the Gamecock Pharmacy Assurance (GPA) pathway are encouraged
to submit application materials as soon as possible.
Complete the GPA pathway application through the admissions portal.
Submit names and contact information for two (2) letters of recommendation in the GPA application.
Be sure to contact your letter writers in advance to confirm they are willing to submit
a letter on your behalf and obtain their preferred email address.
Letters of recommendation need to be submitted by February 1, 2024.
Applications are reviewed on a rolling admission basis, therefore, applying early
in the admission cycle increases chances for an interview and admission consideration.
At the University of South Carolina College of Pharmacy, we seek students who possess
the academic ability to successfully complete the rigorous pharmacy prerequisite coursework
as well as the personal characteristics necessary to be a successful practitioner.
The Admissions Committee evaluates each application holistically on the basis of demonstrated
academic achievement, evidence of knowledge and understanding of the profession, extracurricular
involvement, leadership experience, community service, and letters of recommendation
seeking to identify candidates for an admission interview who are well-rounded and
expected to meet the demands of a pre-professional program.
Academic Considerations: Applicants are expected to possess a solid academic foundation and must have a minimum
cumulative high school grade point average of 3.5.
Letters of Recommendation: Two letters of recommendation are required to be submitted. Evaluators should be able
to evaluate characteristics such as empathy, ethics, intellectual ability, judgment,
oral communication, reliability, and should not include family members, friends, or
family friends. Examples of appropriate references include teachers, advisors, employers,
Pharmacy Experience: Prepared applicants should have a basic understanding of the pharmacy profession.
Pharmacy experience can be obtained through working/volunteering in a pharmacy setting,
shadowing/interviewing pharmacists, and/or researching the profession.
Leadership / Extracurricular Activities / Community Service / Scholarly Activity:
Well-rounded applicants are those that have a history of leadership experience, participation
in extracurricular activities such as concurrent employment, high school athletics,
band, and/or philanthropic/service activities.
Admission Essays: Applicants should address each prompt in the Gamecock Pharmacy Assurance pathway application
Interview Component: As expected by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education, standardized interviews
of applicants are conducted as a part of the admissions process to assess characteristics
including self-awareness, leadership, innovation and entrepreneurship, and professionalism.
Interviews are by invitation only and scheduled January-April. Not all applicants
are invited to interview; applicants not selected for an interview will not be considered
for admission. Applicants not interviewed/admitted to the Gamecock Pharmacy Assurance
pathway are strongly encouraged to pursue the traditional admissions pathway.
Selected students are invited to the interview day which is approximately half-day
in length and consists of an overview, financial information, a tour of the college
and two 30-minute, one-on-one interviews. Parents/guardians/supporters are welcome
to attend and will have information sessions while applicants are conducting interviews.
Interview day activities can be completed either in person or virtually for those
unable to make it to campus. Applicants are notified of the Admissions Committee’s decision the week following
the interview day.
Test Scores: Applicants have the ability to provide test scores for any tests such as ACT, SAT,
and AP scores that they would like the Admissions Committee to consider.
Gamecock Pharmacy Assurance pathway students receive conditional acceptance to the
Doctor of Pharmacy program at the University of South Carolina as a senior in high
Matriculation into the Pharm.D. program is contingent upon satisfying the following
Must earn a grade of C or higher in each prerequisite course taken at the University
of South Carolina on the first attempt. In the event that a prerequisite course is
taken at an outside institution that utilizes the +/- grading system, a grade of C-
will be accepted as a grade of C for GPA pathway requirement purposes.
Must maintain continuous, full-time enrollment at the University of South Carolina
as a B.S. in Pharmaceutical Sciences (pre-pharmacy) major.
Must adhere to the University of South Carolina Code of Conduct and Honor Code, self-reporting
any potential violation to the Student Services Manager or Director of Admissions
within 48 hours of the event occurring.
Must follow all federal, state, and local laws. Any student arrested or convicted
for violation of federal, state, or local laws will self-report to the Student Services
Manager or Director of Admissions within 48 hours of the event occurring.
Maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.25 by the conclusion of each academic
year during the first and second collegiate years.
Successfully complete, with a grade of C or higher, the following GPA preparation
UNIV 101: The Student in the University
PHAR 401: Introduction to Pharmacy in the United States
PHAR 402: Gamecock Pharmacy Assurance to Pharm.D. Bridge Course I
PHAR 403: Gamecock Pharmacy Assurance to Pharm.D. Bridge Course II
Must complete and submit their PharmCAS Application prior to the fall semester of
the sophomore year.
In order to continuously create and maintain the highest quality experiences for GPA
pathway students, a fee of $350 per semester will be required of every student during
the two years of prerequisite coursework. This fee includes the $100 per semester
advisement fee that is required of all USC pre-pharmacy students.
Prior to matriculation into the Pharm.D. program, all GPA pathway students will be
required to submit an application to our national application system, PharmCAS, which
costs approximately $160.
Students enrolled in the GPA pathway may benefit from various cost savings mechanisms,
The transfer of remaining years of USC scholarships towards Pharm.D. tuition rates,
The transfer of remaining years of State of South Carolina scholarships towards Pharm.D.
tuition rates, if applicable
The elimination of the need to apply to multiple Pharm.D. programs, avoiding unnecessary