Idaho Reports; I.S.U. Pharmacy School
Operation for Public Broadcasting and the friends of 10 and 12. Good evening. The patient is sick. The prognosis is guarded and apparently the only prescription helpful is money. That in a nutshell is the story of the Idaho State University pharmacy school. The pharmacy school in Pocatello once considered one of the best pharmacy schools in the entire country is facing possible loss of accreditation soon which really means that students going to that school won't be able to find jobs if they graduate. That means Idaho could be in trouble as well and supplying the needed number of pharmacists in this state. But it also means to some at least further deterioration of quality and prestige in Idaho higher education. Almost every one of us have heard the complaints from higher education officials in Idaho about a lack of money to finance university programs. Well this might be the best example yet of
just how tight budgets really affect things. We begin tonight with producer Paula whistle in Pocatello for the sing. Play. OK. Your theory is that the people feel that. Chances are if you've been to get a prescription filled in Idaho the pharmacist who helped you was a graduate of the Idaho State University school of pharmacy close to 75 percent of the state's pharmacists went to a sous pharmacy school. But that could drop dramatically in the future and Idaho could be put in the position of having to recruit its pharmacists from outside of the state. So you just. Never. Will be able to say that the reason is that the state's only school of pharmacy one that was created by legislative mandate in 1927 and holds the distinction of having offered the first baccalaureate
degree on the Pocatello campus is now facing possible extinction. The problem the school is confronting is the same one being experienced by all schools in the state. Lack of adequate funding. And in the case of the College of Pharmacy that translates to mean inadequate faculty research and facilities at a time when other such programs in the nation are changing and expanding to meet the needs of a rapidly evolving field of pharmacy. We now have essentially give up research. And without that we also have a very difficult time recruiting. Exactly. First of all our starting salaries and the salary levels with all faculty receive here is 30 percent below national equity. We literally have to compete with 71 other colleges a former C for faculty positions. So we have very few of the applicants and very few candidates that will come here and then without a research base they go they simply say we we cannot come by it all.
There are great concerns amongst the faculty myself included for for the viability of the program and in the future. And as a result that hasn't helped the war out here very much. I think that the people that are here are deeply committed to to pharmacy education. And when the faculty is responsible for very very heavy teaching loads it's extremely difficult for them to find time to to to do research to write grants those kinds of things. And that. In addition doesn't help faculty morale. People on the faculty are scientists doing research as part of keeping current in your given discipline and the faculty feels very strongly about that they should have the opportunity to do research up until this year we we've never had a academically qualified students transfer her to another school that they've been satisfied with our program satisfied with the university. During this year we've we've received requests for
five or six students to transfer already and we have indication that the eight or nine additional students have also applied for transfer. We will not know until this fall rather those students will actually go through with that. They have been concerned because of the Publish the about the school and its lack of funding and they're concerned about the quality of the education they're receiving. We simply can't provide that same kind of education that they can see that they can it's very obvious to them that they can receive it. Well the school the school has been put on alert by the American Council on pharmaceutical education and warned that if things don't improve dramatically the school will lose its national accreditation by 1986. We were placed on probation in 1982. That persisted for one year with the promise that we would do make the Vendee improvements increase number of faculty and
improve our program. We have been unable to do those things that we were promised that we promised them we do because of these cutbacks in the last five years. One of the other criticisms was this building this building as it was was erected in 1942 but it has never been remodeled or renovated to to meet the changing needs in pharmacy education. So that's one problem we are in. And so how much time do you get when you have. Literally now or less than one year to show evidence that the state is committed to pharmacy education and is willing to put extra money into it. The impending threat has members of the State Board of Pharmacy worried who say that if the school loses its accreditation they will no longer be able to license its students. We would have as a as a Board of Pharmacy we would have no choice but then to declare graduates of this institution not
eligible to sit for the state board examinations. According to a paper prepared for the university by the college in December of 83 the only way to preserve the College of Pharmacy is to double the budget in the faculty size over the next five years which would mean adding three quarters of a million dollars in the same paper called a five year plan for survival. The introduction reads this is a plea to be heard and a cry for help. That Idaho State University does not lose one of its proudest traditions. But according to Dean Hilliard as of yet almost no one has responded to that cry for help. No one is listening. As far as I can tell the dean of the I don't State University pharmacy school is with us now. Dr. Ira Hilliard has taken it upon himself in the last couple of weeks to raise the cry that his school is in danger of ceasing to exist really. Dr. Howard joins us tonight from Pocatello. Dr. Howard you said there at the end of that video tape piece that no one seems to be listening.
Why is that. That's a very difficult question to answer I really don't know given the the status of the status of the College of Pharmacy at this institution. The fact that it was created here by by legislative law. That it literally served as a nucleus for the development of what we now visualize as idle state university i.e. it's beyond me to understand why the pharmacy program was never given that adequate support that it required particularly since the mid 60s. When you say no one I believe you told our producer Paul the whistle that not even the administration really of your school has been taking this seriously. That's correct. And by that I take her right up to the president Dr. Coulter. Yes. This situation I take it and the possible lack of accreditation now this situation has developed over several years you said in the videotape it goes back to maybe
what five years ago or even longer or much longer than that really. We we haven't had an emphasis on pharmacy placed on that program by this this university or by the state literally since the 1960s the last additional faculty position which was allowed for this program. By separate funding was in the 1960s. In the mid 1950s in fact the support for this university protected by the university administration at that time was so poor that the college lost its its Dean a very a very effective individual. And most of the faculty they went to California established a new College of Pharmacy. So we really haven't had that support that we've needed in order to maintain and keep up with the very dramatic changes in. And what we must do to to educate pharmacists literally since the night since
1960. But I take it in your view that's become even more serious in the last five years. Very much so because by the time that the economic recession hit us and the cutbacks began to pile up on higher education our budget was in such terrible condition that we were unable to do to do anything about it. We had no cushion whatsoever. And even even though we didn't lose faculty do these during these recessions we were unable to make those tremendous adjustments that we needed to in order to maintain accreditation. And accreditation as a video tape pointed out is really absolutely critical to the success of the students in the pharmacy program at ISU. Yes it's very critical. A student by law must graduate it and graduate from accredited college in order to be permitted to take the state board examination not only in this state but in every other state. So they're literally
prevented from practicing and working as a pharmacist. How many students did you graduate this year. Thirty eight. And so what would your average Roman be in the pharmacy school at this point in the last three years. They are the primary professional years of the curriculum we're averaging about 35 to 40 students in each year. That's be loyal. The number of students that we should be educating right now just to meet Idaho needs. So between one hundred forty one hundred and sixty students at any one that would work or that would be optimal. Okay. Let me just ask you quickly about your faculty situation as I understand it you have three positions open in the faculty right now and basically are having a whole lot of difficulty filling those jobs. And one of those positions we've advertised for over a year and still haven't gotten it filled are problems as it was indicated in the introductory piece is not only low salaries it's the inability to allow these young faculty to come in and the established
research careers and have a program of professional development. So they literally reject most of our offers we used to get back in the early all 10 years ago when we had a vacancy we would get 50 or 60 applicants. We now receive only four or five. And most of those applicants aren't qualified. Let me just ask you finally and quickly what would it take to fix this situation. Well we would need a and then a fusion about a least three quarters of a million dollars additional into the program. What we're doing and have to squeeze me would have to come all at one time. No as long as we there was a firm commitment that we would do that over a period of time that would be close enough so that you could do it maintain your program continue on and maintain a quality. What we need to do is start this right now. Not we can't wait
for much longer. We need to show that we we do are committed to this program that we are going to to provide that we're going to provide it adequately even though it may take us three or four years to come up to equity with other schools. Harriet will come back to you. Thank you. Another view of this now from a member of the State Board of Education Mike Mitchell is the board member assigned specifically to Idaho State University. Mr. Mitchell is from the West and he's joining us tonight from Moscow. How serious is this situation in your view Mr. Mitchell. It's extremely serious even here it is said it very clearly and very loudly I hope. Unfortunately what he's saying now it somehow is that information's been shielded from the Board of Education and in like manner the Board of Education has allowed the legislature to be shielded from this problem. How does that happen. I don't really know Mark but having served with Senator a little on the joint committee I don't believe we've ever had a crisis
presentation that I can recall on the College of Pharmacy problem and I don't who State University we've known it's there. We've talked about it and we're talking about it more now but we're doing nothing. Is it Dr. Coulter's responsibility. Well you know for a long time and you don't pass the it doesn't do any good to pass the blame to Dr. colder even if you were staying and he's leaving for another position but for a long time one year the public schools would get an adequate appropriation and then the next year colleges universities and we went this way and the institutions learned how to live with that type of funding. Well then we went for a period of years in which colleges universities did not get adequate funding at least in their their mind die. And but they kept waiting well next year and next year and even this past year the year we're in the legislature of 1984
everyone thought this is college and universities year. Well. Were all the circumstances and everything that happened it was not college and universities year and betting on the come as got us in even more serious problem with all of the activities but particularly the pharmacy program the title state of all of that. And I know as a member of the state board you can point to a lot of problems that you see in higher education and I don't know as we sit here tonight is this the most serious pressing problem. Well it's an interesting thing about this when it has to be considered because it's the one that does supply the the jobs that fills the jobs that are required and I'd hope we would have to look outside and that's not good when we can employ our own educated young people. What the Idaho legislature established this school at the Idaho State University and every time we changed the name of the school
it's been reaffirmed that the College of Pharmacy would be located in Pocatello Idaho at Idaho State. But an interesting little line in that statute and that's Idaho code that's the law is said It shall be maintained at the standards as they are now or here as they are here after may be by an accrediting council or an accrediting agency. We are actually in violation of the law. We have not kept it to the State of the art. That's a board responsibility and a legislative responsibility. We haven't met it. So just quickly what what should the legislature do what should the state board do. Well the state board has got to find out more about it. First of all so that they can present the complete case to the legislature the joint committee. Would they have a little on your program today and being a co chairman of that committee perhaps he will ask his staff in the interim between now and next January to look in and be able to supply even additional information. But like the Department of Corrections last year
the legislature has to know more and understand better what the problem is and the board has a responsibility to bring that message to Mr. Mitchell Welcome back sir thank you. As Mike Mitchell suggests we have another look at the situation now from an influential member of the Idaho legislature Republican Senator David little as the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee. That committee of course is one that appropriates money for the state's higher education programs among other things. How serious do you think this situation is. To laugh in the West been explained by Dr Hillard and Senator Mitchell. I think it's very serious and it really disturbs me and I think Senator Mitchell brought it out that I don't recall any time on a joint committee where they have come in and really made a plea. For the. Pharmacy appropriation. And I checked with some former graduates of the school and they were very proud of the the reputation that the pharmacy school and I as you did have over the past and. It had really bothered me and I don't know. It's really easier to try and
put the blame on someone. I think that. Now the problem has been identified and and I will surely follow up. Senator Mitchell suggestion is to get the staff to go right in and try and find out what we can do with what will take to resolve that. Because to me it is very very serious. And I remember years ago when I was going to University of Idaho when they were talking about making it a four year school and they said well give them this the school of pharmacy. And here we thought we had one of the best in the nation and I've I thought it still was. So this is all really sort of who is to. Well it sure is to me and it might be part of. A lot of it my fault. But. And I'm a little concerned because he was in the last three or four years we've introduced the dental program an eye issue and why we would take a real. Good program ongoing program and neglect it and then come in with the new and and I don't know how we can get a handle on that. And whether it's the legislature or the state board I
assume it's all of us the job due to go away and I guess for a better term a performance audit. I think that we have a tendency. As legislators to go ahead and will introduce programs are well funded and then we have a tendency to forget him. And you know we hear we want quality education. Maybe we're better off with less we're going to have to as a practical matter isn't that the responsibility of the state board and the administration of the schools to let you know how well those programs are performed. Well let me an easy way for me to get out of it but we have the staff up there in a physical office that should be finding out and getting this information. You and I I don't want to pay to place the blame on on either the state more Darius you know we've got the problem the thing is now is to concentrate our efforts on a real solution to the problem. Well let me just finally ask you about that solution. The budget pharmacy school is around $700000 now and you heard Dean who would say that it might take a doubling of that over the
next several years to do what needs to be done. Is that realistic that I guess. Here I said was going to pass the buck and I'll turn round and be the state board that's less than 1 percent of the state board appropriation and they have a lump sum appropriation they have those guidelines. But I think that the legislators from that area of the state and all of this need to really try and get to the bottom of this because we and then either we want to make quality school or abandon one of the two I don't think that we want to go on. And I am concerned that we're we're doing more and more of that is that we try and introduce new programs and of course part of it has been the influx of federal money that came in and we jumped on the bandwagon to get the federal money. Then they've they backed away and then we wind up with media or programs I don't think there's. As is the case and school pharmacy what I think it is in the dental program
let me go back to open this up and invite all you gentlemen to get back in. Do you know your new senator a little seems to be suggesting that the options really are to spend the money or to shut the school down. Are those the options. That is precisely the opposite right now. We we really don't have any other options. We could lose our accreditation again as early as next January. The predication Council is not very happy with the the amount of progress which we've made which is really nothing because we haven't had the additional funds that we've needed to to do those things that we promised them that we would do in 1982. So your message I take it to Senator level and and Mr. Mitchell here both would be if you're going to do something you better do it quickly. At least I have some kind of concrete evidence that the state will back us rather than let the school close. Mr Mitchell How about that. Well I agree. In fact we all seem to be agreeing that we're going to have to do something the
bottom line is going to be that money and I don't know that any of us can answer that. The Board of Education has had a group in the state of Idaho doing 80 and what they call an external audit. They are people from the outside professionals in the academic area. One of those professionals was a person I think Dean Hillard will will agree with was an exceptionally outstanding person in pharmacy in September the Board of Education will get their report. And I can tell you that it is going to be saying the same things. I can't tell you how as we've been saying that that is the most fish or cut bait with the College of Pharmacy at Dido State University. Let me ask you excuse me just let me interrupt you for to ask you about this money question that I think I heard Senator little say that basically that the board could shift the money around within its own budget. Well yes it could. It the board I believe would feel that we would have to take it from someplace else now. If if
you want to target as the senator as mentioned the new dental program you could also target the new way any program with a new vet medicine program new agricultural research programs. You could look at a lot of things and say well those came after College of Pharmacy and they should not have or we should take a good look at them. But it isn't as simple as that because we can't simply go in and say we'll take care of it don't worry about because then something else would slip away. SEN. Well I agree with such Senator Mitchell said. But the problem is that there isn't any way that we can commit the next legislature we don't know the make of it I don't know whether I'll be back in the legislature. And so we're really betting on the next legislature to to really help the state board solve the problem. What I was referring to war is an interim thing to hopefully to to salvage an ongoing program that has to the best of my knowledge have been very successful the state of
Idaho. And hopefully that in the interim. And I think that the legislature will never faced up with the problem and are going to have to do resign. As Dr. Hillard. Read what I said is that it is going to have to have it we either want a quality program or we don't want one of the two. Mark Yes or could I make a suggestion. We'll get a report in September. I believe that the legislature the joint committee would probably be meeting between then and the first of the year before the regular convening of the legislature. We share the information of that with at least the leadership of that committee and its staff the leadership of Senator Little's Yes a joint committee in January. I would sorta hope that the accrediting Council would come in and would place us on some type of semi non accreditation. They would tell us what it is we had to do. Now the legislature is there in January.
If there was enough advance work done it could we ask for a supplemental and say OK we'll this is what we plan to do now and then we will go into a long term project. Keep in mind right now the code says and we have failed to do it as a government that we must keep it up to the standards of accreditation as they were or as they may be. I hear what you're saying we haven't done it. Dr. Hilliard would that be good enough for these folks who are going to do the accrediting. I think that would work out very well I think they would be very glad to work with us. After all their mission is to maintain the quality of pharmacy education. They realize that we need. We need quality pharmacy education out here as well as they do in the east. I think we could work with them there. They will work with us so I think they would if they could see that the state is willing to maintain this excellent program then they would give us that kind of a cooperation.
Sounds like a good plan to use a lot. I think it's the only one and I sure don't see anything wrong with that money you with my whole heart and support. Let me have Senator Mitchell former Senator Mitchell ask you what only. If this is likely to be maybe just the first sort of crisis situation that we're going to see from schools in Idaho that are accredited where accreditation means so much to the students. Are we going to see other situations like this develop. We may see them but I would hope we would handle them better. One of the things that the word was mentioned earlier as to whether the way we've been the system has been shielded from the problem for for the Lord only knows what reason. The Board of Education in my opinion and this is only mine has got to spend more time talking to the deans of the various schools when they're on the campuses provide time to know what is going on in the various colleges of our universities in the state of Idaho. It's my understanding that they have not talked to the deans at the Iowa State University since 1976.
That's not right. Dean you know you're going to go back to you finally here you've heard two very influential men in this state and the subject of higher education do you feel any better after hearing what they've said about the future of your school. I feel better now than I've felt in 15 years. I think finally someone is listening to what we've been trying to say. Well it's excellent. We'll we'll see how it turns out we appreciate your joining us tonight in Pocatello Dr. Howard thank you very much. Thank you very much. Like Michel in Lewiston we thank you for joining us too. Thank you Mark. And so a little thank you sir. Thank you Mark. That's our time for tonight. I'll be off on assignment tomorrow covering the state Republican convention. Jim McNeil will be sitting in here with the latest results in our Idaho opinion survey that we've sampled how I know ones are feeling about the political races this year and also how they're feeling about the question of wilderness. We'll have those numbers for you tomorrow night and I'll have some analysis of the numbers from the state Republican convention in Sun Valley. I'm Mark Johnson. Good night.
The funding for this program is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and the friends of four 10 and 12. Tomorrow night on Idaho reports we'll have the latest numbers from the Idaho opinion survey we've been sampling people on their attitudes about political races. George Nance and Richard Stallman drunks among others will also look at public attitudes about additions to the wilderness system in Idaho and I don't know opinion survey but tomorrow night at 6:30 I don't report here on public television.
Will be working with this set of equipment for the 1984 85 school year. This pilot program will attempt to develop some ways that computers can be used in schools with elementary school children. To. Anything else. It's enough. The Boise school classroom in the gifted and talented program and some of the other special
education programs throughout the district. This lab is the first time that the district at the elementary level has put together a computer lab. And during the 1983 84 school year we'll be experimenting with different ways that this lab can be used. In an elementary school. At the end of this school year another elementary school will be working with this set of equipment for the nine thousand nine hundred forty five school year. This pilot program will attempt to develop some ways that computers can be used in schools with elementary school children.
- Idaho Reports
- I.S.U. Pharmacy School
- Producing Organization
- Idaho Public Television
- Contributing Organization
- Idaho Public Television (Boise, Idaho)
- AAPB ID
- Episode Description
- Idaho Reports looks at the looming crises that Idaho State University's School of Pharmacy is facing. The school may lose its accreditation if significant improvements are not made at the school. Host Marc Johnson interviews three guests to get their perspective on the impending crises. The first interview is with the Dean of the school of pharmacy at Idaho State University. Johnson's second interview is with a member of the state board of education Mike Mitchell. The third and final interview is with the chair of the state Senate's Finance Committee Sen. David Little.
- Series Description
- Idaho Reports is a talk show featuring conversations with panels of experts about Idaho state politics.
- Copyright Date
- Asset type
- Talk Show
- Copyright 1984
- Media type
- Moving Image
Director: Ochoa, Ricardo A.
Director: Segota, Ken
Director: Pickering, Kim
Executive Producer: McNeil, Jean
Guest: Mitchell, Mike
Guest: Little, David
Guest: Hillyard, Ira
Host: Johnson, Marc
Interviewee: Sasich, Larry
Producer: Wissel, Paula
Producing Organization: Idaho Public Television
- AAPB Contributor Holdings
Idaho Public Television
Identifier: 93.0 (Idaho PTV Tape #)
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- MLA: “Idaho Reports; I.S.U. Pharmacy School.” 1984-01-01. Idaho Public Television, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. December 4, 2023. <http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-328-08hdr97j>.
- APA: Idaho Reports; I.S.U. Pharmacy School. Boston, MA: Idaho Public Television, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-328-08hdr97j