6:00: Morning News

Marshall Pharmacy School Gets Go Ahead

Marshall University’s new School of Pharmacy has the approval it needs.  The Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education has granted Marshall’s pharmacy program precandidate accreditation status.

"This is a very substantial hurdle to overcome and to meet," Marshall President Dr. Stephen Kopp told MetroNews on Wednesday.  "It reflects very well on the planning process and the development that’s taken place."

Marshall officials can now officially enroll the first class of students for the School of Pharmacy.  As many as 80 students will begin classes this fall.

Those students were accepted even as Marshall waited on word about accreditation.

"It’s a high bar to meet," Kopp said of the precandidate status.  "And I felt very strongly that we’d meet it, but until you actually get the letter, you’re always on pins and needles."

The precandidate status is only one step in the accreditation process.

Next year, Marshall will submit an application for candidate status to the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education and have another site visit.  When the first class gets ready to graduate, Marshall will apply for full accreditation.

Kopp says he thinks the School of Pharmacy will add a lot to Marshall and to the Huntington community, as a whole.  "I would equate it to being quite similar to the impact that the School of Medicine had, here at Marshall University, in the 1970s," he said.

"It is a very, very profound impact that it’s going to have, not just at Marshall but in the state and the region."

Marshall’s School of Pharmacy is located at the Robert W. Coon Education Building at the Huntington VA Medical Center.  A more than $9 million renovation project continues there.

The Marshall School of Pharmacy is the third in West Virginia.

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