Meet the Ambassador: Kristen Leger

Meet Kristen! She was a biochem major in undergrad, chose UNC because of its location and faculty, and wants to see the Northern Lights.

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Kristen Leger, Class of 2017, Chapel Hill Campus
Hometown: Hickory, NC
Prior Education: Bachelor’s degree, North Carolina State University


If you could have an endless supply of any one type of food, what would you choose?
Pickles, especially fried.

If you won a lottery ticket for $100 million dollars, what would you do with it?
Travel the world! I would love to visit unique places such as Bora Bora, Fiji or Iceland to see the Northern Lights.


What advice would you give a prospective students interested in pharmacy?
Shadow pharmacists to gain a better understanding of the field and to identify mentors who can write strong letters of recommendation for your application.  Also seek out programs designed for pre-pharmacy students such as Mentoring Future Leaders in Pharmacy (MFLIP) or Leadership, Excellence, and Development (LEAD) at UNC.

What experience from undergrad best prepared you for pharmacy school?
I was a biochemistry major in undergrad and I felt that the advanced biochemistry courses really helped prepare me for my courses in pharmacy school, not only content-wise, but also by helping me learn time management and successful study habits.


Why did you choose the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy?
I chose the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy because it was the perfect blend of everything I was looking for. I was drawn to the faculty of the school because I wanted to learn from the best in the field. I also was excited to be located near Research Triangle Park (RTP) where so many pharmaceutical companies call home. I liked how the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy is closely connected to UNC Hospitals, and there were many opportunities to shadow pharmacists in the UNC health-system or complete rotations at UNC Hospitals.

What makes for a successful pharmacy student at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy?
A successful pharmacy student at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy is one who is motivated, excited to learn, and a team-player. Being a pharmacy student at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy includes dynamic coursework with small group learning, and flipped classroom models that require students to always be prepared for class and engaged.


Have more questions for Kristen? Feel free to send her an email: kleger@email.unc.edu

Good food in Asheville

Do you love to eat? Hopefully, yes! There are so many great restaurants in Asheville, NC. Lucky for our students on the Asheville campus, they get to enjoy all that the bohemian downtown of Asheville has to offer – including great food, a huge craft beer scene, and close access to hiking and camping in the mountains along the Blue Ridge Parkway. We ran across this article on the Foodie Crush Blog, and wanted to share it with you. If you haven’t visited Asheville yet, and you love food, now might be a great time to plan a visit. Check out our upcoming spring events, and stop by our Asheville campus for a visit. Make sure to visit Biltmore while you’re there!

Meet the Ambassador: Claudia Ortiz Lopez

Meet Claudia! She finished 3 years at UNC Chapel Hill, likes cheese, and is good at giving immunizations.

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Claudia Ortiz Lopez, Class of 2019, Chapel Hill Campus
Hometown: San Juan, Puerto Rico
Prior Education: 3 years undergrad, UNC Chapel Hill


If you could have an endless supply of any one type of food, what would you choose?
Cheese. You can never have too much cheese. But not blue cheese, that is one I do not like.

If you won a lottery ticket for $100 million dollars, what would you do with it?
First off, pay off my student loans, then I would help my parents pay their mortgage or anything else they had since I feel partially indebted to them. Then I would move to a much nicer apartment and travel each chance I have all over the world.

If you had one extra hour each day, how would you use it?
I always say I want more time to either read more or work out, but the reality is if I had one more hour a day each day, I would probably end up sleeping more.


What would you change about preparing for pharmacy school?
I certainly would have tried to finish my undergraduate degree in 3 years. Although once I obtain a PharmD the bachelor’s will not be as important, to me personally having that piece of paper means something and I foresee that I will try to finish it at some point. I would also have tried to work in a pharmacy setting earlier on, for the more experience one gets, the more prepared one will be for pharmacy school.

What experience from undergrad best prepared you for pharmacy school?
Certainly having a science major all throughout undergrad prepared me for the rigor or the classes in pharmacy school. Also, being involved in extracurricular activities, from volunteering at the hospital to clubs and organizations, truly helped me learn how to manage my time between school related activities, social activities, and extracurricular activities.


What’s been one of your favorite experiences at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy so far?
One of my favorite experiences so far is having already, at the end of just one semester, been certified to give immunizations, and be able to do blood glucose and blood pressure screenings. The practical skills that we have learned have allowed me to volunteer in several events through different organizations and have allowed me to use these skills to directly help people. I was able to give blood glucose screenings to many family members during Family Day, a day where students bring their families to school to experience a day in the life of a pharmacy student, and that was one of the favorite moments yet.

What has been the most challenging part of pharmacy school?
One of the most challenging parts of pharmacy school is trying to be involved in many things and excelling in all of them. All students that are enrolled in pharmacy school are used to excelling and being above average. Once arriving here, it has been hard to cope with thinking that I need a job, research, several leadership positions and a 4.0 GPA because that is what you hear everybody else is doing. The reality is that not all people are doing that, and that everybody should focus on the unique characteristics that made them stand out when admitted to the school and to truly stand out in their own way, not necessarily in everything.


Have more questions for Claudia? Feel free to send her an email: ortizlop@email.unc.edu