Lifelong learning and Mental health in focus at well-attended GU Days
This year's Educational Days at the Faculty of Pharmacy gathered a record number of participants and were characterized by a very positive atmosphere. "The feeling is that we are better equipped for the start of the semester than we have been in many years," states Deputy Dean Anja Sandström.
Lifelong learning and Mental health were in focus when the Faculty of Pharmacy arranged this year's Educational (GU) Days. 85 teachers, administrators and student representatives met at Haga Castle in Enköping and the atmosphere was indeed positive, notes Anja Sandström, Deputy Dean for first and second cycle education:
“After two years of pandemic and Zoom, many in the collegium welcome the opportunity to meet in person and the number of participants was record high. The fact that our pedagogical organization is also better equipped than it has been for a long time contributes to a widespread feeling that we have now consolidated the foundation for a more strategic and dedicated work regarding both students and educations.”
At the top of many higher education agendas is the prioritized work concerning Lifelong learning. In 2020, the Swedish Government launched a long-term investment to strengthen and develop competence supply among professionals, in which the universities of Sweden play an essential part. For pharmaceutical experts aiming to update and specialize their knowledge, the Faculty of Pharmacy is an important hub, offering more than 60 independent courses, all of which respond to current and future challenges in industry and society.
”At the GU days, we listened to both future scouting from industry organizations and analysis of professionals' preferences regarding skills development. In short, e-commerce is expected to take market share from physical pharmacy stores, which may increase the need for retraining. In parallel, we must meet requests for flexibility regarding applications, content and layout of freestanding courses, a task completely in line with our ambition to continuously adjust our range of courses to correspond to what society and participants demand,” says Anja Sandström.
Another important topic is students' mental health. A few years ago, a survey carried out at the Faculty of Pharmacy identified widespread stress connected to the studies. Several initiatives were launched to come to terms with the situation, and a mix of measures has since been developed and implemented. At this year's GU days, a report from the Public Health Authority was presented, stating that mental illness is still more common among university students than professionals of the same age, which prompted a discussion about what a university can do to help its students.
“The values of companionship with other students, access to adults to confide in and continuous contact with study advisors are obvious, and now we have an organization that strengthens our capacity to act where we are needed. During the autumn semester, we will also introduce courses in Mental Health First Aid, where the participants gain the knowledge to intervene and provide psychological first aid until professional help is at hand, so this is a challenge we continue to give top priority,” notes Anja Sandström.
The autumn term 2022 at the Faculty of Pharmacy also marks the start of Sweden's first Master's Program in Biological Pharmaceuticals. A language semester is introduced at the Complementary programme for pharmacists with a foreign degree, providing the participants additional tools in their future professional practice. In addition, two Program Committees were recently launched to work with a focus on the faculty's Master and Bachelor of Science Programmes in Pharmacy.
- The Faculty of Pharmacy currently educates more than 1,100 students
- With the ambition to give each student a first-rate education, the Faculty recently revised the Master and Bachelor of Science Programmes in Pharmacy
- The Faculty of Pharmacy also welcome a large number of students to a wide range of Master's programmes
Anja Sandström, Deputy Dean
First and second cycle education
email@example.com, 018-471 5026
text: Magnus Alsne, photo: Anja Sandström, Mikael Wallerstedt
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