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Pharma Power: A Career as a Pharmacist


YOU wouldn't automatically associate a career in pharmacy with travel, but for Emily Kelly, her job with Unicarepharmacy has seen her venture not only around Ireland but also to Germany and, more recently, Italy.

Since graduating with a master's degree in pharmacy from the University of Brighton in 2001, Kelly's career has gone from strength to strength. Upon returning home, she started working as a relief pharmacist for Unicarepharmacy in Dublin.

Kelly was soon promoted to second pharmacist in Unicarepharmacy Rathmines, before becoming manager of the pharmacy. Unicarepharm-acy has training programmes for its employees, so she was able to do her first management course with the company. Before long, she was managing the Unicarepharmacy in Nutgrove.

Next, Kelly was promoted to area manager within Unicarepharmacy, in charge of managing 18 pharmacies.

"I love working as an area manager. No day is the same. It involves a lot of troubleshooting," she says.

When Kelly started as an area manager, she was given the opportunity to do a general management programme for two years in Germany with Celesio, Unicarepharmacy's parent company.

In December, she applied for a one-year secondment position with Unicarepharmacy's sister company, Admenta Italia, in Milan. She was successful, and moved to the Italian city last month.

"I have responsibility for 90 pharmacies here in Milan, as regional manager North Italy. It is a new challenge for me.

"Pharmacy is a great course for someone who enjoys science, but also wants to meet people," she says. "Studying in the UK was a fantastic experience."

Following their degree, graduates must work for 12 months as a pre-registration pharmacist before registering and practising as a pharmacist.

Once Kelly qualified and had registered with the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, and then the Pharmacy Society of Ireland, she started working with Unicarepharmacy.

"Pharmacy gives you so many options. You can work in hospitals, industry, the community or run your own business. For anyone interested in science and chemistry, who enjoys interacting with people and enjoys caring and helping people out, community pharmacy is a fantastic career."

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