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Four pharmacy students in a lab

UH Hilo College of Pharmacy students

The University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy (DKICP) has graduated to the next step in national recognition by attaining full accreditation from the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) for a full eight years for the first time.

“This is affirmation of the significance of maintaining excellence in all ways at UH Hilo,” said Chancellor Donald Straney. “As DKICP passes the 10-year anniversary as the only college of pharmacy in the Pacific Region, we can celebrate with all stakeholders, both at the university level and in the community, to recognize their hard work that has gotten us this far.”

ACPE is the national accreditation body that evaluates all colleges of pharmacy in the nation. DKICP was found to be “compliant” or “compliant with monitoring” in all 25 standards set by ACPE with no “partial” or “noncompliant” findings. In a prior ACPE evaluation in 2015, DKICP was granted full accreditation for two years with the provision that it was “contingent on continuous progress” and monitored by ACPE.

This year’s positive assessment was determined by a combination of a site visit as well as from a 110-page self-study compiled by faculty, staff, students, preceptors, administrators and community members from the dean’s advisory council.

More about the accreditation

The ACPE survey team, representing faculty and administration from several notable pharmacy schools, practitioners in the field, and the ACPE accreditation staff, conducted the on-site evaluation in Hilo and Honolulu during the week of March 7–9.

According to their report, particular attention was made to the progress and changes that have occurred since the last focused on-site evaluation in fall 2014. It cited the appointment of a new dean as well as new chairs for each of the college’s departments.

The report to the Board noted that while research is still regarded critical activity for faculty, the college has revisited its mission and vision so that “evaluative expectations have been revised to more realistic levels.”

Other changes noted in the report include progress on construction for the college’s permanent building.

“As we all recall, accreditation was at risk previously when we couldn’t prove support for a permanent building,” said DKICP Dean Carolyn Ma. “This time when the survey team visited, they could see concrete evidence that building has begun, and that we have a clear future. We are forever appreciative to the many members of our college, the community and the legislature who rallied behind us.”

Citing “good support” from the university, the report showed encouragement by future developments in interprofessional education, which includes working with members from medicine, nursing, pharmacy, social work and public health.

The accreditation term granted for the doctor of pharmacy program extends until June 30, 2025.

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