Date of Award



© 2015 Kin Ly

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)



First Advisor

Carey Clark

Second Advisor

Michelle Collay

Third Advisor

James Culhane


The field of pharmacy is changing from a drug-distribution-centered model to a patient-centered integrated model whereby pharmacists are actively involved in patient care as part of an interdisciplinary team. To address the estimated pharmacy leadership crisis in the future and to prepare pharmacists to work in the changing healthcare landscape, national pharmacy organizations such as the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) and the American College of Clinical Pharmacy (ACCP) have stated that postgraduate pharmacy residency should be mandatory by 2020. Past pharmacy research literature has shown that while many factors influence students to pursue a pharmacy residency, there is a lack of understanding about the influence of clinical faculty mentoring on students to pursue a postgraduate residency. This phenomenological study explored pharmacy students’ experiences with clinical faculty mentoring in relation to Professional Year 4 (PY4) students’ decision to pursue a pharmacy residency.

The research was conducted utilizing ten students from two Northeastern Schools of Pharmacy. Qualitative data was collected via interviews using semi-structured open-ended questions. Data from the interviews gathered from both sites were merged for data analysis. Results showed the emergence of seven themes with connected elements: (a) type of mentoring relationship, (b) mentoring functions, (c) mentor characteristics, (d) mentee characteristics, (e) time spent with mentor, (f) decision-making, and (g) need for formal mentoring programs. Findings indicated that PY4 students’ decision to pursue a pharmacy residency does relate to clinical faculty mentoring even though the types of influential clinical faculty mentoring experiences varied. Psychosocial mentoring functions were utilized by clinical faculty that provided positive experiences for participants and allowed for transformative growth. Mentor and mentee characteristics were important in supporting the mentoring process. Time spent with mentors could not be quantified and the quality of time spent with mentors was important. The central finding that clinical faculty mentoring does influence students’ decision to pursue a pharmacy residency fills a gap in pharmacy mentoring literature.


Ed.D. Dissertation