Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.)


The University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo’s Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy (DKICP) offers a four-year course of study leading to the Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) degree.

The curriculum, rooted in basic, biomedical, and pharmaceutical sciences, is designed for students to acquire knowledge of the scientific underpinnings of pharmacy practice. The social, behavioral and administrative sciences that inform pharmaceutical care are integrated throughout the curriculum.

Pharmacy practice arenas of therapeutics, drug information, pharmaceutical care, and experiential education permeate each year through Pharmacy Practice Experiences (PPE). PPE capitalizes on community outreach and service learning that taps into Hawaii’s cultural values and diverse biosphere inclusive of its Native Hawaiian Health systems and community practices that embody cultural healing and alternative therapeutics. The wide range of medical specialties available among different healthcare institutions throughout the United States and U.S. Territories such as Guam, American Samoa and Puerto Rico provide clinical sites to fulfill ACPE requirements.

UH Hilo – DKICP embraces the Institute of Medicine’s (IOM) five core competencies for the health science disciplines as key components of the curriculum. These include patient safety, patient centered care, team relationships, technologically informed practices and inter-professional education (IPE), which are also endorsed by the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP).

UH Hilo DKICP annually accepts up to 80-90 students for Fall admissions.

During the four years at DKICP, students will complete:

  • A total of 138 semester hours of credit;
    • 89 hours in required courses
    • 4 credit hours in elective professional courses
    • 45 credit hours in clinical/experiential education.

The mission of the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo DKICP is the traditional mission of academic healthcare education, research, and service with emphasis on patient care. More specifically, our mission is:

  • To educate pharmacy practitioners and leaders.
  • To serve as a catalyst for innovations and discoveries in pharmaceutical science and practice for the promotion of health and wellbeing.
  • To provide community service, including quality patient care

The vision of the DKICP at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo is to drive improvement in the quality of healthcare in Hawaiʻi and throughout the Pacific Basin.

We are achieving this vision by focusing on Hawaiʻi’s unique cultural, physical, and geographic features, by employing world-class faculty, and by graduating exceptional professionals.

The DKICP mission is predicated on four overarching goals:

  • Implement academic curricula that lead to a flagship Pharm.D. program, which produces graduates committed to serving people via science-based practice.
  • Accountability to the Institute of Medicine’s core competencies for the health professional workforce.
  • Conduct research that advances pharmaceutical sciences and makes a difference for humanity inclusive of effects on global health.
  • Cultivate culturally competent, intellectually inquisitive, self-directed, caring pharmacists who are critical thinkers, problem solvers and life-long learners in a changing healthcare environment.

At the conclusion of the four year Pharm.D. program a graduate will be able to:

  1. Think critically and solve problems effectively.
  2. Communicate effectively with patients and other health care providers in all matters related to providing pharmaceutical care.
  3. Make ethical decisions concerning pharmaceutical care.
  4. Demonstrate professional and social responsibility.
  5. Engage in self-directed learning.
  6. Manage all aspects of pharmacy related activities.
  7. Promote public health and provide drug information and education to patients and other health care providers.

A values framework underpins the DKICP mission and vision in its commitment to building a culture of quality and excellence in pharmacy practice and pharmaceutical sciences via enactment of five values:

  • Ethics underlies responsibility and accountability to standards in ensuring safe, quality, healthy environments for education, conducting research, providing pharmaceutical healthcare services, and sustaining livelihood. The DKICP thrives upon ethical decision-making and morality.
  • Community is cultivated through spaces of collaborations and places of meaning, respect, openness, freedom and creativity. The DKICP is rooted in humanism.
  • Diversity among people, cultures, theories, practices, institutions permeate 2lst century healthcare. The DKICP embraces and celebrates diversity, with a niche in cultural diversity.
  • Scholarship is the passion and outcomes of academic and professional life. The quest of the DKICP for quality and excellence affirms scholarly pursuits.
  • Life-long learning is the pathway to stimulating pharmacy practice on a continuum of development and advancing pharmacy as a science and profession. The DKICP is nurtured via the continuum of lifelong education.

Graduates of the Pharm.D. program at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo will be able to seek employment as pharmacists in a variety of professional settings.

Their professional duties may include, but are not limited to, distribution of drugs prescribed by physicians and other health care practitioners, providing information about prescriptions and their use to their patients and customers, advising health care professionals on the prescription and interaction of drug therapies, compounding, pharmaceutical research, hiring and supervision of staff, business operations of pharmacies, administering of vaccinations, etc.

The job outlook for pharmacists remains strong nationwide and in Hawaiʻi. There is currently a shortage of community, clinical and research pharmacists. It is expected that the field of pharmacy will grow at a “faster than average” rate over the next decade (Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook: Pharmacists).

In order to practice as a registered pharmacist (R.Ph.), state licensure is required.

To be eligible for consideration, students must complete the following:

  • Completion of the prerequisite courses including:
Required Pre-Requisite Courses Credits
General Biology I and II with Labs 8
Microbiology with Lab 4
General Chemistry I and II with Labs 8
Organic Chemistry I and II with Labs 8
Human Anatomy & Physiology I and II with Labs 8
Calculus 3
English (including 3 credits composition) 6
Humanities 6
A course that includes a world/cultural diversity component 3
Social/Behavioral Sciences 6
Economics 3
Communications (with a public speaking component) 3
Total 66

International Applicants must have foreign transcripts evaluated by a foreign transcript evaluation service. In addition, international applicants must also complete a minimum of 30 semester hours of coursework in the United States at any regionally-accredited college or university. Of the 30 required semester hours, 6 semester hours must be allocated to English courses, 3 semester hours to Speech/Communication, and 15 semester hours to non-remedial science courses.

  • Completion and submission of the PharmCAS application including two professional letters of recommendation and applicable fees.
  • Completion and submission of the supplemental application to be requested via email by UH Hilo DKICP.

Meeting the minimum qualification requirements does not guarantee admission. All eligible applications are reviewed by the UH Hilo DKICP Admissions Committee which applies multiple criteria to assess applications and select candidates to be reviewed.

Once all of the required application components noted above are received, the complete file will be reviewed by the DKICP Admissions Committee.

UH Hilo DKICP operates on a competitive, rolling admissions process.
Early submission is strongly recommended.

Applicants are responsible for tracking the progress of their application and verifying that all necessary documents have been received by the UH Hilo DKICP Office of Student Services. The application review process begins in August and continues until all seats are filled. Selected students will be invited for an interview and are contacted via email.

Interviews can be conducted in-person or video conference and are closed file. In closed file interviews, the interviewer is not provided with any information about the candidate except for their name. This approach was selected by the Admissions Committee as it helps remove preconceived biases based on students’ experiences, grades, personal statements, etc.

Interviews are conducted from September through June with additional interviews as needed. Applications and interview scores are reviewed by the Admissions Committee for final admission decisions.

Accepted students will be notified by email.

DKICP will participate in the PharmCas Early Decision Program which is a binding option for applicants who have decided that a particular pharmacy degree program is their first choice and that they will enroll if accepted. As an Early Decision applicant, you can apply to only one pharmacy degree program.

Eligible applicants will be invited for an interview during the months of September and October. You may be offered early admission, denied admission, or deferred to regular applicant status.
If offered admission as an Early Decision applicant, applicants are obligated to accept the offer and they will not be permitted to apply to other PharmCAS institutions. If, however, you are denied admission as an Early Decision applicant or deferred to regular applicant status, you may apply to other PharmCAS institutions for an additional fee. Early decision applicants will receive an admission decision by October 19, 2018

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