Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Midway College pharmacy school in Paintsville would be a branch of University of Charleston

Midway College and the University of Charleston announced today that the West Virginia school would establish and operate the pharmacy school that the college has planned in Paintsville.

On Dec. 28 the schools signed a letter of intent starting a 60-day "due diligence" period, during which they will "explore the feasibility and ramifications of the expansion and seek approval from the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education," they said in a press release. "If a final agreement is reached, the University of Charleston would operate the school of pharmacy in Kentucky as a branch campus and deliver its full four-year Pharm.D. program in Paintsville beginning in January 2013."

The Charleston school is accredited and graduated its first class in 2010. Midway started moving toward a pharmacy program in Eastern Kentucky two years ago, and has renovated a 36,000-square-foot building in Paintsville and started recruiting faculty and students. The university will interview Midway faculty and staff for Paintsville positions if a final agreement is reached. Students who have been accepted by Midway will have to re-apply to the university for admission.

"The agreement between the two schools paves the way for an innovative collaboration," the press release said. "It enables Midway College to fulfill the intent of its major donors to train pharmacists in Paintsville and serve the educational needs of the area, while allowing the University of Charleston to expand its footprint and grow its already strong academic program." The campus will be known as the Perry Center for Pharmacy Education, after the late Chad Perry of Paintsville, its major donor.

"Midway College sees this as the most prudent means of bringing pharmacy education to the area and fulfilling all of our goals," Midway President William Drake Jr. said in the release. "Building a school from the ground up takes great effort, time, money and innovation. This collaboration is innovative; we are matching our turnkey facility with UC's existing curriculum to move along the process of realizing the dream of opening a school of pharmacy in Paintsville less expensively for all involved."

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