Student Business Plan Competition. A team from the University of Iowa was the runner-up, and a team representing the University of North Carolina Eshelman School of Pharmacy finished as the second runner-up. The winners were announced as part of the National Community Pharmacists Association’s 2020 Annual Convention, which was held virtually.
“Congratulations to all of the participating teams from the 17th annual Good Neighbor Pharmacy NCPA Pruitt-Schutte Student Business Plan Competition, and in particular this year’s finalists and the winning plan for the Functional Pharmacy,” said NCPA President Brian Caswell, owner of Wolkar Drug in Baxter Springs, Kan. “Each of these teams demonstrated an extraordinary resilience in crafting their business plans as the coronavirus pandemic evolved and the pharmacy industry itself adapted to serve patients as safely as possible. I applaud them all for their efforts and congratulate UAMS for rising to the top of a very strong pack. The future of independent pharmacy is looking bright if these students are indicative of what’s to come.”
The 2020 competition drew participants from 27 schools and colleges of pharmacy across the United States. The business plan competition is the first national competition of its kind in the pharmacy profession. The contest is named in honor of two great champions of independent community pharmacy, the late Neil Pruitt, Sr. and the late H. Joseph Schutte. Its goal is to motivate student pharmacists to create a business model for buying an existing independent community pharmacy or developing a new one. Through this competition, NCPA is helping to prepare tomorrow’s pharmacy entrepreneurs. The competition is supported by Good Neighbor Pharmacy, Pharmacists Mutual Insurance Company, and the NCPA Foundation.
The three finalist teams presented their business plans on Oct. 6 in a live Q&A-style webinar before the competition judges and an online audience. Their recorded presentation and handouts can be found here.
“The NCPA Foundation helps cultivate the next generation of independent community pharmacy owners and the Good Neighbor Pharmacy NCPA Pruitt-Schutte Student Business Plan Competition is our crown jewel in those efforts,” said Jerry Shapiro, president of the NCPA Foundation. “Many past participants in the competition have gone into ownership and point to this experience as being an important steppingstone in achieving that goal.”
The winning team, the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, is comprised of team captain Marissa Johnston and team members Brittany Butterfield, Patrick Gurley, and Byron Johnson. The team advisers are Seth Heldenbrand and Schwanda Flowers, and the dean is Dr. Cindy Stowe. Their chapter received $3,000, and an additional $3,000 was contributed to the school in the dean’s name to promote independent community pharmacy at the college of pharmacy. The team members, team advisers, and dean will also receive complimentary registration, travel, and lodging to NCPA’s 2021 Multiple Locations Conference this February in Florida.
The runner-up, University of Iowa, is comprised of team captain Patrick McFadden and team members Steven Landa, Aaron McDonough, Jessica Satterfield, and Matthew Yeates. The team advisers are Stevie Veach and Randy McDonough and the dean is Dr. Donald E. Letendre. Their chapter received $2,000, and an additional $2,000 was contributed to the school in the dean’s name to promote independent community pharmacy at the college of pharmacy.
The second runner up, the University of North Carolina Eshelman School of Pharmacy, is comprised of team captain Anna Brown and team members Sydney McEachern and Daniel Ruiz. The team adviser is Patrick Brown and the dean is Dr. Angela Kashuba. Their chapter received $1,000, and an additional $1,000 was contributed to the school in the dean’s name to promote independent community pharmacy at the college of pharmacy.
All the schools this year have participated in a previous year, and will receive an engraved plate to add to their plaque. Teams placing in the Top 10 received a special plate acknowledging this distinction.
The teams rounding out the competition’s Top 10 are: Ohio Northern University Raabe College of Pharmacy, Philadelphia College of Pharmacy University of the Sciences, Rutgers University Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy, University of Georgia College of Pharmacy, University of Missouri Kansas City School of Pharmacy, University of Oklahoma College of Pharmacy, and Western University of Health Sciences College of Pharmacy.
The submissions were judged by more than 60 community pharmacists, pharmacy owners, and business coaches from across the country.
The pharmacist judges for the written competition were:
Andy Pope, Ben McNabb, Bhavesh Desai, Braheim Knight, Brett Fortier, Brian Meneses, Brian Perkins, Carter High, Cathy Humphrey, Chad Sanders, Chris Cella, Christina Davis, Christopher Daly, Clayton Thompson, Cole Sandlin, Cortney Mospan, Crystal McDuffie, Curtis Ernst, Danny Nelson, Dared Price, David George, Dirk White, Dixie Leikach, Donald Via, Ed Horton, Emma Leffler, Erik Hamik, Hashim Zaibak, Holly Henry, James McCaslin, Jeffrey Puetz, Jeffrey Stockham, Jim Springer, JJ Peak, John Cravey, John Duffy, Joseph Poling, Julie Hambly, Justin Baker, Justin Wilson, Kelley De La Fuente, Ken Epley, Kristen LeClere, Kristen Riddle, Kristine Cosmai, Lisa Garza, Mark Ciarlone, Mark Gonzales, Mark Lawson, Matthew Conner, Michael Vesely, Mike Burns, Mike McCarty, Neil Leikach, Phillip Rozell, Robert Kennedy, Robert Mosby, Robyn Bradley, Sara Hover, Scott Podolan, Scotty Sykes, Stephanie Smith Cooney, Steve Adkins, Steve Moore, Tammy McDonald, Tim Mitchell, Tom Cory, Tom Wright, Tonya Priest, Travis Wolff, and Yorke Spence.
The judges for this year’s live competition were: Steve Moore, 2019 NCPA Willard B. Simmons Pharmacist of the Year; Mike Bollinger, Live Oak Bank; Melissa Jostand, Pharmacists Mutual Insurance Company; Sharon Sherrer, NCPA Foundation board member; and Bill LaRose, AmerisourceBergen.