TORONTO — Walmart Canada has made a $1 million donation to the University of Toronto’s Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy to create the Walmart Canada International Pharmacy Education Centre.
Walmart Canada has made a $1 million donation to the University of Toronto’s Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy to create the Walmart Canada International Pharmacy Education Centre.
Walmart Canada said Tuesday that the center includes a 100-seat classroom and student breakout areas with videoconferencing and audio-visual equipment designed to enhance and expand the university’s International Pharmacy Graduate program.
The International Pharmacy Graduate (IPG) program provides internationally educated pharmacists with the knowledge and skills necessary to meet Canadian pharmacy practice standards and licensing requirements. Since 2000, about 800 students have completed the bridging program, which is offered twice a year and has an enrollment of more than 75 students each time.
It’s expected that the donation from Walmart Canada will facilitate a 30% increase in enrollment in the IPG program over the next several years, helping Canada meet a rising demand for qualified pharmacists.
"Walmart Canada’s generous donation provides the funding and physical infrastructure to increase enrollment, augment program offerings and enhance the overall learning experience," according to Dr. Henry Mann, dean of the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy. "The center will provide students with a designated space to study, attend classes and interact with faculty, staff and pharmacy practitioners so they can develop the skills and support networks necessary to succeed in Canadian pharmacy practice."
The Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Toronto is Canada’s largest faculty of pharmacy, as well as a global leader in pharmacy education and a center of innovation and discovery in pharmaceutical sciences.
"Canadians are increasingly turning to Walmart for health care solutions, and our pharmacists play an integral role in delivering these services," Eric Muir, senior vice president of health and wellness for Walmart Canada, said in a statement. "Through the establishment of the Walmart Canada International Pharmacy Education Centre, together with the University of Toronto we are investing in the future of health care to ensure Canadians have access to pharmacists that meet the highest standards. International pharmacist graduates continue to be an important part of providing health care services to Canadians, representing up to 30% of practicing pharmacists."
Muir added, "Walmart will continue to provide programs supporting our Canadian pharmacist students and are proud to have this opportunity to also support international graduates in Canada."
Based in Mississauga Ontario, Walmart Canada operates 325 discount stores and serves more than 1 million customers daily.
"Pharmacists are important and valued members of the health care team because they provide excellent services for people," stated Deb Matthews, Ontario’s minister of health and long-term care. "The Walmart Canada International Pharmacy Education Centre at the University of Toronto will help provide international students the education necessary to practice in a patient-centered environment. This is good news for all Ontario."