SCF and LECOM Partner on Doctor of Pharmacy School

(Bradenton, Fla., March 19, 2012) – State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF) and Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine (LECOM) have partnered to facilitate the admission of SCF graduates into LECOM’s Doctor of Pharmacy program.

The articulation agreement establishing the SCF-LECOM School of Pharmacy Early Acceptance Program was signed March 13 at SCF’s Bradenton campus. Participating in the signing ceremony for SCF were President Dr. Lars A. Hafner; Board Vice Chair Dr. Craig A. Trigueiro, a Bradenton physician; and SCF Professor of Natural Science and SCF/LECOM Program Director Dr. Anthony Gambino. Participating for LECOM were Vice President of Academic Affairs and Dean of the School of Pharmacy Program Dr. Hershey S. Bell, also a medical doctor; Vice President of Medical Education Dr. Chet Evans; and Associate Dean for Bradenton Operations Dr. Sunil Jambhekar.

“As a doctor with a local medical practice, I’m interested in offering our students more access to health professions programs that will allow them to study, live and work here in our community,” said Trigueiro. “Strengthening the SCF-LECOM affiliation is a practical and efficient way to accomplish that.”

“The LECOM School of Pharmacy is pleased to partner with the State College of Florida,” said Bell. “This is a great opportunity for SCF students who wish to pursue a pharmacy degree to do so locally.”

“The development of this type of academic partnership is consistent with both institutions in fulfilling community and regional health practitioner needs,” said Evans.

Employment in the field of pharmacy is projected to grow by 23 percent between 2008 and 2016, or 2.92 percent average growth per year, which is much faster than the average for all occupations projected by the Florida Agency for Workforce Innovation, according to the Tampa Bay Business Journal.

Previously, the University of Florida and Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University have been the State University System options available to SCF graduates who qualified for a Doctor of Pharmacy program.

Hafner echoed the local connection appeal. “We are fortunate to have the opportunity to work locally with an educational partner that has a respected international presence and vision,” Hafner said.

The Early Acceptance Program calls for LECOM to reserve five slots for SCF students who complete an undergraduate (associate) degree, including or in addition to required higher-level math and science courses.

SCF and LECOM will jointly advise and monitor the academic progress of qualified, interested students to assure they can demonstrate they are capable of handling the rigorous course load of the demanding program. The program will be open to current SCF students as well as current high school students enrolling at SCF.

While a dedicated student who enrolls at SCF with specific math and science courses already completed could graduate in two years with the 60-hour Associate in Arts degree, most students are expected to opt for a “three-plus-four” year track -- three years at SCF to accommodate additional math and science courses, plus four years at LECOM’s School of Pharmacy.

The program will begin Fall 2012. Enrollment and other information will be available soon on the SCF and LECOM websites at and


SCF President Dr. Lars A. Hafner, Dr. Hershey S. Bell, vice
president of academic affairs and dean of the LECOM School of
Pharmacy, (back row) Dr. Anthony Gambino, SCF professor of
natural science and SCF/LECOM program director,
Vice Chair Dr. Craig A. Trigueiro,
Dr. Sunil Jambhekar, LECOM
associate dean; and Dr. Chet Evans, LECOM vice president of
medical education.

SCF President Dr. Lars A. Hafner, Dr. Hershey S. Bell, vice
president of academic affairs and dean of the LECOM School of
Pharmacy, (back row) SCF
Board Vice Chair Dr. Craig A. Trigueiro,
Dr. Chet Evans, LECOM vice president of medical education.

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