Challen Named MSHP Preceptor of the year

Published on 29 May 2018

Laura Challen, Pharm.D., MBA, BCPS, BCACP, assistant professor of pharmacy practice and clinical pharmacist at the Mercy JFK Clinic at Mercy Hospital in St. Louis, was recently named Preceptor of the Year by the Missouri Society of Health-System Pharmacists (MSHP). Each year, MSHP presents the award to a health-system pharmacist in recognition of their outstanding service to the profession as a preceptor to pharmacy students.

Challen was nominated by Tricia Berry, Pharm. D., BCPS, professor of pharmacy practice, chair of the department of pharmacy practice, and Nicole Gattas, Pharm.D., BCPS, FAPhA, assistant director of community and ambulatory care, associate professor of pharmacy practice and director of the PGY1 community pharmacy residency program. Challen was recognized for her tireless efforts to create meaningful and innovative patient care learning experiences for students.

“Laura is continuously able to create a positive, yet challenging, learning environment, and she provides formative feedback that leads to significant student/resident learning and development,” Berry said.

Now working as a preceptor at the Mercy JFK Clinic at Mercy Hospital in St. Louis, Challen began precepting in 2012 at the Barnes-Jewish Hospital Center for Outpatient Health. Since then, she has worked with 68 students from the College during their ambulatory care rotations.

“Laura was the first faculty practitioner within the ambulatory care clinic at Barnes-Jewish Hospital,” Berry said. “She got the practice off the ground and was able to create an experience that allowed students to interact with patients and other health professionals, assess patient’s medications and medical problems, make recommendations, monitor therapy and evaluate the impact of the services provided.”

“Dr. Challen’s enthusiasm and the way she interacts with students on rotation is motivating to others,” Gattas said. “Her rotation is one of the top ambulatory care rotations that we have.”

Year-after-year, Challen has received perfect evaluations from her students, who continue to be motivated by her willingness to bring them into the conversation and collaborate with them while crafting appropriate care plans for patients.

One student evaluation noted, “Dr. Challen was amazing at making me feel welcome and at ease. She worked hard to include us in decisions and let us learn for ourselves, while still being there to guide us along. She was a great teacher who had a lot of knowledge on not only pharmacy but also with administrative roles and teaching.”

 “I’m truly honored and humbled by this award,” Challen said. “I have consistently sought out practice opportunities and jobs that ensured I was able to continue being a preceptor. Being a preceptor not only benefits students, but also creates a long lasting, positive impact on both my practice site and myself. This award has energized me to continue designing opportunities for future learners.”

The College partners with more than 1100 preceptors to provide hands-on learning experiences for students through introductory and advanced pharmacy practice experiences in more than 750 locations across the country and around the world.

Pharmacists who are interested in becoming a preceptor should contact the Office of Experiential Education at 314.446.8523.

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