Wilkes University is home to the nation’s only Spanish language concentration specifically for pharmacy students. Bilingual pharmacists gain an edge in the job market because they can better communicate with an increasingly diverse population in the United States, particularly among Spanish speakers.
The Spanish concentration requires a minimum 12.5 credits. Students are encouraged to use professional electives.
Required courses are:
- SP 203 or 204 Intermediate Spanish II (typically offered in fall and spring semesters)
- SP 205 Spanish Conversation (typically offered every third semester)
- SP 211 Conversational Spanish for Health and Social Services (typically offered spring semester)
- PHA 560 Self-Directed Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experience (SD-IPPE)
- Study abroad in Spain
The SD-IPPE course is a required service learning course that runs over a three-year
timespan. Students in the Spanish concentration must have at least four of the 20
required hours of service in a Spanish-speaking community between the P1 and P3 years.
Service-oriented spring break trips directed at Hispanic communities may satisfy this
requirement, depending on the experience.
Students can declare the concentration any time before the end of the P3 year. Discuss your intent with your advisor. Early planning will allow the greatest flexibility in scheduling required courses.
Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
Pharmacy students can earn a concentration with a minor or even a major in Spanish. A minor requires more credits than a concentration, but the concentration has a required experiential and health care focus that makes it a unique credential. It also requires language immersion via study abroad in Spain.
Students can choose either a four- or six-week summer study abroad experience in Spain, earning 6 or 9 credits. Learn more at foreignstudy.com. This program is usually completed before pharmacy rotations.
It can be accomplished in a normal course schedule with careful planning and the right scheduling. The earlier you declare your intention to pursue the Spanish concentration, the better. Students are encouraged to take their faculty Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experience in the summer before the P2 year, if offered, to reduce conflicts. Students should work with their advisors when necessary to complete an IPPE Conflict Form, which is sent to the Office of Experiential Learning to minimize Spanish class disruptions due to experiential requirements
If a student passed an AP exam with a 4 or 5, credits will be accepted. Students who did not take an AP exam may consider enrolling in Spanish 203 if they studied Spanish three or four years in high school and earned good grades.
Hear from our students:
"Pharmacists continually interact with patients who speak solely Spanish. The Spanish concentration will give me the confidence to clearly and effectively communicate with my patients and allow them to feel comfortable to disclose important information for optimizing their care. My Spanish communication skills from the Wilkes pharmacy program have prepared me to lead a team of student pharmacists to help serve a remote community in the Dominican Republic."
Mohamed A. Jalloh, Pharm.D. '14,
Drug Information and Evidence-Based Practice Fellow
School of Pharmacy & Health Professions
"I have spoken Spanish weekly at the Wilkes-Barre Free Clinic for the last two and a half years. Most of the Spanish includes clarifying why the drug is being used and what to expect as well as translating for the pharmacists, doctors and staff. I have also provided instructions as to how patients should use his/her diabetic testing supplies. I look forward to using Spanish as a pharmacist."
Spanish Concentration Co-directors:
Jennifer Malinowski, Pharm.D.
Paola Bianco, Ph.D.