The number of students dropping out of the College of Natural Sciences is rising, thanks to a change in the study system to become a pharmacist.
The new system requires would-be pharmacists to take liberal arts and basic courses before applying to a college of pharmacy.
Students who want to be pharmacists enroll in science-related departments, take the required courses, then drop out after their sophomore years when they apply to a pharmacy school.
According to Prime MD, an academy that prepares applicants for the Pharmacy Education
Eligible Test, 72 percent of applicants to pharmacy schools
come from science departments.
The new “six-year system” for pharmacists was adopted in 2009, and the first students to attend
a college of pharmacy under it enrolled in 2011.
The change is having an impact at Ewha. In 2010, 22 students dropped out of Ewha’s College of
Natural Sciences compared to 88 students in their sophomore year in 2011.
The rise in dropouts causes problems for remaining students.
“After the examination for special admission [to a college of pharmacy], classes decrease in size, which causes the education cost per person to rise and adds to the school’s financial burden,” said Kim Sung-jin, the dean of the College of Natural Sciences.
“Remaining students who want to study basic science may feel anxiety and swim with the current
without noticing,” Kim added.
Furthermore, students’ preferences on certain classes affect the number of classes held.
“Because students try to attain the required credits as quickly as possible, the courses that require much time and effort are avoided and relatively easy courses are preferred,”Kim said.
Moreover, according to the research by Prime MD, students from Ewha make up 10 percent of
all applicants who are accepted at colleges of pharmacy, the highest acceptance rate of any university.
The number of women in colleges of pharmacy is high because pharmacist certifications last through middle-age, which gives women more flexibility in their careers.
“The job is preferred because the demands of marriage and childcare experienced by most working
women do not come across,” said Lee Kyung-lim, the dean of the Ewha College of Pharmacy.
“Pharmacists are more independent in that they can start a pharmacy any time they are ready to work.”