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CU Skaggs School of Pharmacy Climbs to 15th in the Nation

Latest US News & World Report ranks school in top 10% of all pharmacy schools 

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The University of Colorado Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences is ranked as the 15th top school of pharmacy out of the 141 ranked programs comprising the “2024 Best Pharmacy Schools” by US News and World Report. This recognition secures CU Pharmacy’s position in the top 10% of all such schools in the nation 

“This national recognition speaks to the outstanding efforts of our faculty clinicians and pharmaceutical researchers, staff and lab professionals,” said Ralph Altiere, dean of the CU Skaggs School of Pharmacy. “I think you would be hard-pressed to find a more dedicated community of educators, scientists, and healthcare specialists anywhere in the country.” 

Dean Altiere identified several key areas that likely impacted the School’s top-tier ranking. Chief of those being the consistently high student outcomes. Over the past year, CU Doctor of Pharmacy students significantly outperformed the national average on both the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy NAPLEX exam and the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) residency match rate. 

“The caliber of students graduating from our PharmD program is truly outstanding,” said Brian Hemstreet, senior associate dean of Student Affairs. “I believe our world-class medical campus, excellent experiential program, and innovative curriculum all contribute to providing our students with the diverse skill set needed for making a positive impact in the current pharmacy environment.” 

Other factors that Dean Altiere cited as contributors to the School’s national ranking include: 

  • Increased research funding from NIH and other agencies 
  • National recognition of the Center for Drug Discovery 
  • Launch of the CU Research Pharmacy 
  • High-impact publications from faculty and graduate programs 
  • The hiring of the School’s first Assistant Dean of DEI 
  • Interprofessional education in which pharmacy students learn alongside medical, dental, physical therapy, and nurse practitioner students 
  • Innovative patient care practice in community, ambulatory care, health system, and specialty practice 
  • Innovative remote PharmD offering 
  • Robust student support and leadership opportunities 

USNWR updates its pharmacy school rankings every four years. CU Pharmacy moved up five places, from a previous ranking of 20th in the nation in 2020. 

According to the USNWR website, the ranking methodology is based on survey responses of academics at peer institutions, with respondents rating "the academic quality of programs on a scale of 1 (marginal) to 5 (outstanding)." For the newly released results, the organization surveyed programs offering Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) degrees accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education in fall 2023 and early 2024. 


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