Swansea University has welcomed a trio of new staff as the countdown continues to the launch of its first pharmacy programme in September.
Sophie Croucher, Dr Rhian Thomas and Dr Suresh Mohankumar are joining the University’s Medical School as it prepares to welcome its first intake of students on its four-year MPharm programme. It will also be launching a pharmacy with a foundation year course.
As lead pharmacist for education and training at Swansea’s Singleton Hospital, Sophie Croucher has considerable experience of overseeing the training of pre-registration pharmacists and delivering lectures to foundation doctors on adverse drug reactions and prescribing errors.
She will be joining the University as a teacher practitioner, delivering the clinical pharmacy theme and leading on practice placements, which allow students to apply their learning in practical settings across the pharmacy profession.
She said: “I have always aspired to have a career combining both clinical practice and pharmacy education. This post will allow me to help shape and inspire future pharmacists which has always been a long-term career goal.”
Dr Rhian Thomas, who takes up a post as senior lecturer, has taught on a variety of programmes at both undergraduate and postgraduate level. Her area of expertise is in physiology and pharmacology with an interest in the biology of disease, particularly Alzheimer’s disease.
She said: “Having previously taught on an established MPharm programme, I am incredibly excited to be involved in the start of a new pharmacy degree programme.
“Being from South Wales, I am also particularly excited to be involved in developing this programme in a Welsh University! This promises to be a very innovative degree programme where we can integrate the different pharmaceutical disciplines into our teaching.”
Award-winning teacher Dr Suresh Mohankumar has worked in pharmacy education, research and administration around the world for more than 18 years and retains his passion for promoting and advancing pharmaceutical sciences education and research.
“The pandemic has reinforced that the pharmacist’s role in healthcare is critical, so I am excited and extremely proud to be able to educate the next-generation of pharmacists.
“The potential applications of artificial intelligence (AI) in pharmaceutical sciences and care are unprecedented and warrant possible transformations in pharmacy education and research. I believe it is time to devise the likely applications of AI and hope to progress this here at Swansea.”
Head of Pharmacy Professor Andrew Morris said: “This is a very exciting time for us. We are delighted to be strengthening our teaching staff and adding to the range of expertise we offer with the arrival of our new colleagues. We are also very pleased we will be able to provide an exceptional learning environment for students with our ongoing £2.1 million project to create purpose-built pharmacy facilities.”
Head of Swansea University Medical School Professor Keith Lloyd added: “It is great to be able to welcome such experienced new team members. The standard of teaching is another reason why our new MPharm programme is going to be a key part of delivering first-class pharmaceutical care for people in Wales.”