Portrait of fourth year PharmD studnet Kiana Zohrabi with Ernie Avilla and Jonathon Nahn

The Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy is Canada’s top educator of pharmacy students, and we are recognized internationally for our research excellence. Through the Discovery Pharmacy, we are building what will be one of the most innovative, integrated pharmacy knowledge creators in the country. The Discovery Pharmacy will bridge teaching and training with research and innovation. The exploratory model will prepare our students to thrive by offering an authentic practice setting in our own building and enable researchers and students to discover and implement agile models of patient care.   

From August to September 2021, fourth year PharmD student Kiana Zohrabi completed an Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experience (APPE) at the newly launched Discovery Pharmacy incubator space. As part of this rotation, she helped plan the immunization clinics where University of Toronto students, faculty and staff can now receive a COVID-19 or seasonal flu shot.

Explain your rotation at Discovery Pharmacy and why this opportunity appealed to you?

I had the opportunity to complete my non-direct patient care rotation at the Discovery Pharmacy (DRx), planning the operations of the COVID-19 immunization clinic with DRx Leadership team. We developed the immunization clinic workflow and implemented various quality tools to meet our strategic and operating priorities to ultimately optimize the pharmacy team and client experience.

What was the most important thing you learned from your preceptor on this rotation? What was it like to collaborate with the Dean as part of your rotation?

My preceptors were Ernie Avilla, Executive Director at the Discovery Pharmacy and Lisa Dolovich, Dean of the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy. They are both great leaders and it was an absolute honour to work with them and learn from their experience.

Working with Ernie helped me further develop my leadership skills. I learned how to navigate various tasks and responsibilities needed when opening a pharmacy and lead a multi-disciplinary team. Working with Dean Dolovich was a very unique experience. She has a clear vision for DRx which is not limited to the dispensary functions and current practices. She encourages creativity and innovation and inspires her team to achieve excellence.

How do you think the Discovery Pharmacy will help transform the future of pharmacy?

The DRx will transform the future of pharmacy by developing the leaders of tomorrow with its focus on education and promoting innovative clinical practices through building research and other services.


This Giving Tuesday, help enable students like Kiana to participate in innovative programing designed to meet the ever-evolving needs of the professions.

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