Application and Selection Process | Program Responsibilities| Program Benefits

Application and Selection Process

Program Responsibilities

Program Benefits


Application and Selection Process

Q: How do I apply for NorthShore residency?
A: The application process will utilize PhORCAS, or Pharmacy Online Residency Centralized Application Service. Through the PhORCAS site, and as part of our application packet we require the following documents be submitted to all 4 of our hospital sites: CV, Letter of Intent, 3 Letters of Recommendation, and college of pharmacy transcripts. Phorcas application portal: http://www.ashp.org/phorcas.

The application deadline for the 2015-2016 residency year is January 9, 2015. You must also register for the ASHP Residency Matching Program.

Q: Since the NorthShore PGY1 pharmacy residency program has multiple sites, each with their own matching code, is the applicant applying to each site?
A: Yes, the applicant must apply to all 4 individual sites since each site has its own unique National Matching Service (NMS) code, however as all the sites are part of one residency (only one ASHP Residency number), the applicant will only have to pay for one residency application fee (the applicant can apply to all the sites associated with that residency program for one application fee.

Q: How many students apply to your residency program and how many do you accept each year?
A: The residency program has 14 resident positions for the 2015 – 2016 year across all four hospital sites. For 17 positions for the 2014-2015 year, we received over 200 applications in 2014.

Q: Do I have to go to the ASHP Midyear Clinical Meeting to apply to your program?
A: Attendance at the ASHP Midyear Clinical Meeting is not a requirement of the application process.  Instead, it is an opportunity to meet with representatives from our program, ask questions, and get a broader perspective of what we offer.

Q: Since I am attending the residency showcase at the ASHP Midyear Clinical Meeting, is it necessary to have an on-site interview?
A: Yes, an on-site interview is required because:

  • Not all preceptors that are involved in the interview and selection process attend the ASHP Midyear Clinical Meeting.
  • It is important for candidates to physically see the work settings.

Interviews for the pharmacy residency program are NOT conducted at the Midyear Clinical Meeting because it would detract from other educational opportunities.

Q: If I do go to the ASHP Midyear Clinical Meeting, does that increase my chances of getting the residency?
A: Each application is reviewed against the same set of criteria.  Attendance at the ASHP Midyear Clinical Meeting is not part of those criteria.

Q: Do you prefer in-state students or those who have had a rotation at NorthShore?
A: We require that our residents be eligible for licensure or already licensed in the state of Illinois.  No preference is given to candidates based on prior rotations at NorthShore, ethnic background, religion, pharmacy school, state of birth or any other demographic data.

Q: What are you looking for in a potential candidate?
A: The pharmacy residency program at NorthShore would like to hire pharmacists with high academic standing and favorable recommendations that demonstrate the applicants' commitment and ambition in their previous positions.  We also consider work experience, career goals, and communication skills important factors in our selection process.

Q: How do I schedule a site visit and interview?
A: Once you have submitted the required application paperwork, you may be contacted by the residency program director to schedule an interview.  Interviews are conducted during the months of January and February.

Q: What is the interview day like?
A: The interview is a full-day event that allows the candidate to visit the four hospitals. Candidates will have the opportunity to meet the residency program director, managers, preceptors, residents, and pharmacy staff depending on individual availability.

Q: When will the selection process for residencies occur?
A: The results of the Residency Matching Program are usually available at the end of March.  Applicants will be sent a letter of agreement from the residency program director, which must be signed and returned as acknowledgement of acceptance.

Q: How is the distribution of residents to hospital sites determined?
A: Each hospital site has its own match code and they are entered in the match system individually. Applicants express their preference through ranking each hospital site as desired in the match system. While applying to all 4 hospitals in PhORCAS is required, ranking all 4 hospitals is not required.

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Program Responsibilities

Q: What are you training the resident for?
A: The PGY1 Pharmacy Residency provides training in acute care clinical pharmacy and practice management. 

Q:  What is the start date for the PGY1 residents and how long is the program?
A: The 2015-2016 PGY1 Pharmacy Practice Residents will begin their six-week orientation on Wednesday, June 24, 2015 and will complete the year-long program on June 23, 2016.

Q: How are rotations scheduled?
A: Each rotation is scheduled based on residents’ interests, hospital site and preceptor/slot availability. Considerable effort is put into accommodating residents’ preferences despite the large number of residents through the completion of a pre-residency interest assessment.

Q: What is a "project"?
A: A project may include any of several different activities including writing a newsletter article, developing a clinical guideline or service, presenting a journal club, evaluating drug utilization, presenting at P&T committee, providing drug information, or presenting case studies.  A “major” project and a medication utilization evaluation (MUE) are required.  The MUE must be presented at the ASHP Clinical Midyear Meeting in December while the major project must be presented at the Great Lakes Residency Conference in April.  Both projects are guided by a project preceptor, and generally take several months to complete.  The major project must be completed and written in a format suitable for publication in order to receive a residency certificate.

Q: Is there project time scheduled?
A: Residents are given office time to work on their projects.  The time allocation is flexible and appropriate for each project.  It is up to the discretion of each preceptor as to when a resident has project time during each rotation.  In addition, 2 weeks of time is available for project work throughout the year.

Q: What types of presentations are required?
A: The major project presentation will take place at the Great Lakes Residency Conference and the MUE poster presentation will take place at the ASHP Clinical Midyear Meeting.  Other presentations may include, but are not limited to, journal club, case studies, in-services,and P&T reviews.

Q: What are the staffing/service requirements?
A: PGY1 Pharmacy residents generally fulfill their weekend service commitment by staffing two shifts, every other weekend (either Friday night, Saturday morning, Saturday night, Sunday morning, or Sunday night). 

Each resident will also staff six full weeks throughout the year. Whenever possible, the resident will be scheduled to staff the team corresponding with the clinical rotation they just completed.

Q: How much interaction do the residents have with their preceptors?
A: Daily interaction occurs between residents and their preceptors, and the department maintains an open door policy that allows residents access to their preceptors at any time necessary.

Q: How much interaction do the residents have with the program director?
A: The program director overlooks the residency program on a global scale, and will review and provide constructive feedback on research and other projects periodically.  The program director meets with each site's residents and preceptors on a monthly basis for feedback, discussion of progress, and to answer any questions or concerns. The residency coordinators at each hospital site have more interaction with the residents, providing feedback on an almost daily basis.  While the program director and residency coordinators are available to the residents if needed, most interactions occur between the resident and their preceptors.

Q: How are the residents evaluated?
A: Residents are evaluated by their preceptors during and at the end of each rotation and quarterly by the Residency Program Director and residents advisors.  A computerized evaluations system (ResiTrak) is utilized.

Q: Is the residency affiliated with any university, medical or pharmacy school program?
A: NorthShore is a primary teaching hospital affiliated with the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine.  Although there are several pharmacy schools in the Chicagoland area, our program has no direct affiliation.  

Q: What teaching opportunities do the residents have?
A: Residents have the opportunity to assist with pharmacy students who are on IPPE or APPE rotations at NorthShore. Residents also complete a teaching certificate program through Rosalind Franklin University College of Pharmacy.

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Program Benefits

Q: What types of positions have past residents taken after completing the residency?
A: Completion of a PGY1 Pharmacy Residency program opens the door to many different employment opportunities.   We work with our residents to help find the opportunity that best suits their interests and skills.  Past residents have found positions that use their residency training to its fullest.

Q: What opportunities are available at NorthShore?
A: NorthShore employs over 75 pharmacists and managers in a variety of roles.  Residents have access to employment opportunities before the search is taken to the public and can apply for an open position in the final month of their residency.

Q: What is the salary?
A: The salary is competitive and adjusted annually. 

Q: What are the benefits?
A: Benefits include healthcare and tax deferred annuity and more.

Q: What resources are available for residents to attend professional meetings?
A: Budgets for travel vary from year to year, and residents will be supported financially as best as possible depending upon the financial situation of the organization at the time.  The resident should expect that some costs may be incurred out-of-pocket.  Typically, reimbursement is provided (at least in part) for meeting registration, flight, and lodging in accordance with NorthShore policy.

Q: Do residents have a library and other resources available?
A: Residents are provided with a computer on-site and remote access to e-mail, Intranet, Lexi-Comp (drug information), Ovid (electronic library), and Epic (electronic patient records).  In addition to the computer resources, NorthShore has a full service library and provides lab coats, malpractice insurance and pagers.

Q: Do residents have any work space?
A: A specified office space is allocated for use by the residents.  Each resident has their own computer, work space, phone and file drawers.

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