UT College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences News

Posts Tagged ‘China’

International APPE: A student’s journey

By CHUN WONG, PharmD ‘14

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAs a P4 student pharmacist, I began my Advance Pharmacy Practice Experiences (APPEs) in a unique way. My first APPE rotation was at the Affiliated Hospital of North Sichuan Medical College located in Nanchong, the second most populated city of Sichuan Province, China.

Over the course of a month, I worked with my preceptors to learn about traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), including acupuncture and herbal medicine, and the role TCM can play in improving patient health.

I was able to converse and exchange ideas about pharmacy practice in institutional and community settings with local clinical pharmacists, pharmacy faculty and pharmacy students at North Sichuan Medical College.

I experienced the rich Chinese culture, including celebrating the annual Dragon Boat Festival. Overall, this experience was undoubtedly fruitful and unforgettable for me. It has certainly given me insights on the important roles pharmacists play in improving health and wellness of patients around the world.

Chinese scholars learn and share knowledge at UT

Six visiting scholars and one graduate student from the North Sichuan Medical College (NSMC) visited the College from February through June. Their visit, which follows a visit from a faculty delegation in 2013, demonstrates the thriving learning, teaching and research partnership between North Sichuan Medical College and The University of Toledo College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences.

NSMC is a government-run college of medicine in Sichuan Province and is located in the second largest higher education center of Sichuan Province—Nanchong City, the origin of the Three Kingdoms Culture.

Visiting scholars were mentored by faculty in the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, and the College of Medicine and Life Sciences.

Si Wang was mentored by Dr. Jeff Blumer, professor and chair of the Department of Pediatrics in the College of Medicine and Life Sciences.

Jiaxin Yan was mentored by Dr. Amira Gohara, director of the post-sophomore pathology fellowship and sophomore medical student pathology course in the College of Medicine and Life Sciences and Dean Emerita of the Medical University of Ohio, and Dr. James Slama, professor of medicinal chemistry and director of the B.S. in Pharmaceutical Sciences program in the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Xue Mei was mentored by Dr. Steven Peseckis, associate professor of medicinal chemistry in the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Qi Shi was mentored by Dr. Kelly Manahan’s group. Dr. Manahan is a professor and chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology in the College of Medicine and Life Sciences College of Medicine and Life Sciences.

Tielong Tang was mentored by Dr. Ajay Singla, professor and vice chairman of the Department of Urology in the College of Medicine and Life Sciences and director of Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery.

Huang Xuezhu was mentored by Dr. John McSweeny, Professor Emeritus of psychiatry and neurology in the College of Medicine and Life Sciences, Dr. Yueh-Ting Lee, professor of psychology in the College of Languages, Literature and Social Sciences, and Dr. Zahoor Shah, assistant professor of medicinal chemistry in the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Graduate student Lijun Luo studied in the laboratory of Dr. Ming-Cheh Liu, professor of pharmacology in the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences.

NSMC faculty members attended classes and laboratory sessions and observed the instructional methods used in the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences and in the College of Medicine and Life Sciences as well as the University of Toledo Medical Center and Clinics. In addition, the faculty members and graduate student were exposed to broad academic and social settings in which they expanded their cultural knowledge and practiced their language skills.

Learning included language skills developed through the American Language Institute and teaching methods enhanced through classroom observation, in addition to observation of clinical practices and participation in cultural and college engagements.

The faculty members and student from NSMC also shared aspects of their home culture with the UT community. They presented a lecture about Chinese tea ceremonies and conducted a tea ceremony for UT faculty and students as well as staff members and prospective students at the home of Dean Early. The experience was enriching for all who participated.

Around the World: Teaching in China

Kayleigh Majercak at the Great Wall

Kayleigh Majercak at the Great Wall


I never thought that after I graduated from UT, I would find myself traveling to China to teach for four months. If someone had told me that, I would have laughed and responded, “In my dreams!” But here I am living in China! It is still hard to believe. Life is full of surprises!

I am currently the youngest teacher teaching freshman and sophomore students at Beijing-U.S.A. College of English. The students are part of the International School of Business, which is affiliated with Melbourne Institute of Finance and Management. After their second year, the students will study abroad and travel to Melbourne, Australia to finish the rest of their program.

At first, I’ll admit, teaching was a bit of a challenge.  The students vary in their level of English knowledge, which ranges from very good to poor. Thus, I had to find a way to simplify the information I needed to teach, as well as try  to provide real life experiences so they could understand and apply the concepts.  It was trial and error when it came to teaching methods, until I found something that worked. I really have to applaud the students; not only are they still practicing and learning English, they are also taking courses that are not in their native language. That is quite difficult in itself.

So far, this opportunity has been  a wonderful learning experience. I enjoy teaching the students and they enjoy teaching me.  It is a great feeling to know that I  am shaping the lives of others and able to provide them with different perspectives. In the beginning, it was a bit of a culture shock, but I have finally gotten the hang of things. I am learning a lot and understanding the culture better everyday. My Chinese still has a long way to go, but I am slowly making progress. Even though my Chinese may not be sharp, I can definitely say my chopstick skills have greatly improved! I enjoy interacting with the local people as well as experiencing the food.  The students and people are so friendly and always willing to help. Sometimes I feel like somewhat of a celebrity.  Everywhere I go, I get stared at (I do not blend in too well), and people ask if they can take my picture. It is almost like my very own paparazzi!

I feel lucky to have been given this opportunity. China is a great place to travel and explore. There is so much to see and do.  I would like to give a special thanks to Jing Meyer, coordinator of advising and student services for the professional division,  for informing me about this once-in-a-lifetime adventure. I can cross “climbing the Great Wall” off of my bucket list!  Some people only dream of being able to do what I have done.  I am living the dream!

Kayleigh earned a BSPS degree in pharmacy administration with a minor in business.