Richard Coca, a rising senior at Collinsville High School, graduated from the BESt Pharmacy Summer Institute sponsored by Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Express Scripts, Inc – earning a scholarship and admission to St. Louis College of Pharmacy.
CHS Teacher Pat Szpila said, “It is a six week program for future pharmacists. Ricky Coca spent six weeks doing chemistry where he took top honors. He was awarded an $18,000 scholarship and an acceptance letter to StlCOP. Ricky is a senior this coming school year. He was one of my AP Chemistry students last school year and opted to do this program. I am very proud of him.”
The mission of the BESt Pharmacy Summer Institute is to expose and prepare local multicultural students for a future career in healthcare, with an emphasis in pharmacy. The mission is executed with a model that combines academics, exposure and professional development. Academics focus on improving mathematics, science, language arts and ACT skills.
Students get exposure to the pharmacy profession through pharmacy lectures and site visits. Professional development emphasizes personal brand, character and leadership development.
“I was accepted into this summer program for a six week period in which we lived on campus during the week,” explained Coca, “I completed a calculus course to receive college credit, as well as advanced college level chemistry and pharmacy 101.”
“At the end of the program, I was honored to receive an automatic acceptance into the St. Louis College of Pharmacy along with a scholarship of $18,000 every year for four years. Before this program I had an idea that I wanted to go into healthcare, but after seeing how much of an impact I would have on people’s lives, I can gladly say that it is the field I want to go into.”
Richard will be a member of the St. Louis College of Pharmacy’s 2019 freshman class.